5 Resources for Citizen Journalists

If you haven't heard about these yet, here is a list of (mostly) new resources that might make you safer and more reliable…

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1. SaferJourno toolkit: Digital Resources for Media Trainers

Recently published by Internews, this free PDF download (Creative Commons) is oriented towards teachers and is also a great reference for those just looking to learn about how to be a safer journalist. The kit focuses on: assessing risks, malware and basic protection, keeping data safe, researching securely, protecting email, and mobile phone safety.

2. Reporting on Humanitarian Crises

This freely downloadable tome from ReliefWeb and Internews is a guide and manual for humanitarian workers, reporters, and teachers to help increase balance in reporting. It includes exercises for classes and has sections explaining what responses usually happen in a humanitarian crisis, and dealing with safety and security.

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3. Verification Handbook 

Another recent publication, this free download, written by top journalists and well-respected media partners explains how to deal with user generated content in emergencies. It explains why verification is so important – and how to do it – including verification for text, images, and video.

4. Checkdesk from Meedan

An in-process project to watch: Meedan is helping to improve verification for citizen-driven news production in the Middle East, currently working on “a citizen-led live blogging tool, powered by an alpha release of Checkdesk, for Egypt’s leading independent newspaper Al-Masry Al-Youm” – and to be extended soon to other countries and publications.

Screen shot 2014-04-14 at 14.31.265. Women's Rights Campaigning: Info-Activism Toolkit

From Tactical Tech, published in 2013 but worth revisiting, it lays out basic campaign how tos in an accessible, digital manner. Including Basics (audience, message, networks…), Strategies (telling stories, inspring actions, grabbing attention, focusing on mobiles, print, social media, etc), Tools, and Examples. Everything focuses on women's rights.

(Also related: A recent article by Witness focused on reporting on sexual violence and a how-to guide)

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