3D Newsroom Debuts in Second Life

Press Release: Murrow Center 3D Newsroom Debuts in Second Life

A Shared Media Experience and Citizen Journalist Training Center Sponsored by the McCormick Foundation

PULLMAN, Wash. – The Edward R. Murrow College of Communication at Washington State University and the McCormick Foundation are partnering for the creation of the Murrow Center 3D Newsroom, a unique 3D project that will train aspiring citizen journalists on the best practices in reporting.

This Specialized Reporting Institute, which will debut April 20 at the 2010 Murrow Symposium and Virtual Journalism Summit, features an interactive meeting and training space designed around the themes and issues important to both established and emerging journalists, as well as anyone interested in news literacy and the state of today’s news industry.

“The McCormick Foundation is proud to partner with the Edward R. Murrow College,” said Clark Bell, director of the McCormick Foundation’s Journalism Program. “Our reporting institutes are designed to provide practical reporting training on timely, specialized topics of importance to news audiences.”

Housed on the virtual campus of WSU in Second Life, the 3D Newsroom is among the first projects to utilize a new virtual world technology known as Shared Media.

With Shared Media, online participants can collaborate and share simultaneous multimedia experiences within a 3D space. The technology is used to power the Murrow Center 3D Newsroom’s interactive kiosks, which feature free lessons and videos to train citizen journalists on reporting basics, including ethics and the legal considerations of blogging.

Future lessons will focus on many of the entrepreneurial concerns of aspiring independent journalists, including lessons on optimizing media content for search engines and basic Web analytics training.

“These emerging 3D spaces offer fascinating new opportunities for storytelling,” said Lawrence Pintak, founding dean of the Edward R. Murrow College of Communication. “And as the traditional, newspaper-based world of journalism looks for appropriate new ways to provide the checks and balances vital to democracy, this project will provide a very significant catalyst for innovation.”

Visitors can also see a special 3D exhibit of historical Edward R. Murrow archives, including photo, audio and video highlights from Murrow’s career. This presentation aims to reinforce and promote awareness of the “Murrow Standard” of fair-and-balanced journalism to the general public and aspiring citizen journalists.

The Murrow Center 3D Newsroom represents the first iteration of a new Murrow College initiative, known as The Murrow Standard. This effort will eventually expand to include wider online tools that help train and teach bloggers about the best practices of reporting in the standard set by the legendary broadcast journalist.

The project was designed by WSU students Aaron Brown and Kayla Sheeley under the supervision of WSU’s Dave Cillay and Brian Maki.

To access the Murrow Center 3D Newsroom, visit the WSU campus in Second Life. Viewer 2 users with Second Life installed can teleport directly to the campus by using this link: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/WSU/210/93/55

For more information on the debut of this project and the Virtual Journalism Summit 2, visit: http://communication.wsu.edu/virtualjournalism