Introducing the PRX campaign curators

Contact: Jake Shapiro, Executive Director
617 576-5455

PRX is pleased to introduce two Campaign Curators who will help lead PRX’s contribution to the recently announced Public Media Election Collaboration.

Campaign Audio Curator
Charles Lane is a freelance radio and print reporter who files frequently with WSHU, NPR new magazines such as Justice Talking, Here & Now, as well as VOA, Radio Netherlands, and Soundprint. He also writes for the Religion News Service, Catholic World Report, and Penthouse (!) among others. His fourth full-length radio documentary will be distributed by Soundprint this spring, and his fifth will be distributed on PRX in mid-March 2008.

Charles’s reporting has been funded by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, the Paul Robeson Fund for Independent Media, and the PRX/NEA Reversioning Fund. He studied Patristic History at Oklahoma State University. He now lives in Harlem with his wife and her cat.

As Campaign Audio Curator Charles will work with PRX to find, select, annotate, and promote public radio and other audio material on Campaign ’08 and related issues. The collection will include produced pieces, interviews, raw audio from campaign appearances, issue-based and local or regional stories that can be edited or excerpted for re-use by stations and other project partners. An initial campaign collection is underway and located here:

Social Media Curator
Katherine Bidwell is a producer and writer who most recently worked for Open Source, the pioneering public radio program that actively integrated blogging and “web 2.0” approaches in the production, presentation and promotion of the show. She was also a producer for NPR’s “The Connection” and has worked for a number of environmental nonprofits and as a freelance editor. Katherine lives in Watertown, Massachusetts.

As Social Media Curator Katherine will work with PRX to discover, review and promote citizen media and “user-generated content” from blogs, YouTube, podcasts and other sources. Selected content will be showcased on local and national public media websites.

About the project

Public media has a unique opportunity to cover Campaign 2008 and elevate public engagement around critical issues at stake nationally and locally.

The democratization of the tools for creating and distributing media has resulted in an explosion of conversation, connection and content. This in turn creates a critical need for ways to sift, filter and find value amidst irrelevant or even harmful expression.

One important role is to use public media’s presence and journalistic values to showcase and highlight examples of the diverse range of content and conversation already taking place online.

While the CNN/YouTube debates are the highest profile attempt so far to incorporate participatory media into coverage of Campaign 2008, there are few focused efforts to help audiences navigate the growing ocean of “user-generated content” to find relevant, important and revealing voices and perspectives.

This social media curating project is an experiment to explore approaches to this task, in the context of a critical national moment of a presidential election.

For the election audio project, we will help bubble up stories that otherwise might get lost in the shuffle, create an collection for timely use during the campaign season as well as a helpful archive for further evergreen and “long tail” opportunities in the future.

With the proliferation of audio on-air and online there’s a critical role to play in sifting, sorting, curating and promoting the best of what’s available. The PRX campaign collection will be a vital resource for public broadcasting stations, partners and the public.

About PRX

The Public Radio Exchange is an online marketplace for distribution, review, and licensing of public radio programming. PRX is also a growing social network and community of listeners, producers, and stations collaborating to reshape public radio. The mission of PRX is to create more opportunities for diverse programming of exceptional quality, interest, and importance to reach more listeners.

Read more about PRX here

PRX is a collaboration of the Station Resource Group and Atlantic Public Media, with support from public radio stations and producers, The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, The National Endowment for the Arts, The Ford Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Open Society Institute, the Surdna Foundation, and Google Grants.