Archives for the month of: June, 2013

A screen capture of Cohen's story on the PBS Idea Lab homepage

NEW YORK — Joe Verdirame has a background at J.P. Morgan and funding startups.

Now he hopes to reshape funding for independent video journalism.

Verdirame, 39, is the founder of Vourno, a new publishing platform to help crowdfund video journalism.

The site launched on May 20 and is largely a blank slate. So far there has been one project that was completely funded in 24 hours. Verdirame hopes that, once the site builds some momentum, the concept of building multiple revenue streams for journalists (donations, advertising, licensing, etc.) will be enticing to freelancers.

Read the rest of the story here on PBS MediaShift’s sister site, Idea Lab.

All of my reporting on the Personal Democracy Forum in New York City last weekend.

A full story for PBS MediaShift:

With reports that the National Security Agency is amassing data from Internet and phone companies, jokes abounded at the 10th annual Personal Democracy Forum (PDF) in New York City on June 6 and 7, especially when the list of sponsors for PDF sounded like a tally of NSA’s tech titan collaborators — Google, Facebook, Yahoo, etc.

But against the backdrop of Silicon Valley and government snooping on citizens, speakers held “big data” in high regard and pointed to a number of technologies that had the potential to amass tons of raw data for analysis and democratization.

A bunch of photos:

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A dispatch on “Mediatwits”

And a reflective essay for the American University Career Center on how I was able to go:

Interning can be expensive. Living, eating, transportation. It makes it hard for people of limited resources to have the opportunity to intern. That’s why a federal judge on June 11 ruled, with potential implications for the intern market, that, in one case, interns should have been paid for doing work.

I’m lucky to be supported financially during my internships. But transportation, especially to conferences, turned out to be the most expensive part for me.

Chilean President Sebastián Piñera at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. June 4. Photo by Zach C. Cohen.

Chilean President Sebastián Piñera at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. June 4. Photo by Zach C. Cohen.


It’s odd when the intern’s the boss.

For the last few weeks, I’ve been editing PBS MediaShift’s Daily Must Reads, a collection of the latest news in media innovation and journalism industry trends. Though it often requires me making simple edits such as checking links and deleting commas, I often make much more substantive calls, such as nixing or pitching stories.

Julie Keck, our social media and newsletter author, typically takes my recommendations. Though she’s been working for MediaShift (and working in general) much longer than I have, I often have the final say.

Read the full story here.

Figured I’d get a little exercise on my way to seeing a show on H Street, so I biked (mostly downhill) 8.5 miles. Felt great!