Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Record's Community Media Lab is now open

The Record is putting the finishing touches on its Community Media Lab in our building in downtown Troy (501 Broadway).

The goal is to have a space where we can bring the community in to collaborate with us on all types of projects - from citizen journalism (ie. blogging) to forums on topics of interest to business owners to dialogues with local business, arts, education, government, and non-profit leaders.

The room, located on the first floor near the entrance, is brightly lit with capacity for 30 people: it comfortably seats 24 people at seminar-style tables, with room for another half dozen or so seated on the perimeter. We will install a video display in coming weeks for multi-media presentations, and Wi-Fi is present for Internet connectivity. We have also roughed out an area to build a new restroom in the future, but in the meantime there is one located on the same floor.

We soft-launched use of the room today with an internal training presentation (see photos above right and at right of John Krivosheyff from the Journal Register Co. leading digital sales training). Next week we have a couple public seminars called "Advertising That Works" scheduled (registration required). In coming months we will open it up to a full compliment of activities. We envision workshops for students on journalism; get-togethers for our growing compliment of bloggers; brown bag lunch discussions for businesspeople on topics such as social network and e-mail marketing; and roundtable discussions with local leaders from different fields that we will broadcast and report on.

This room is the result of 10 months of discussion and planning; originally scheduled to be created late last year, the date was pushed back when we decided to renovate another area of our building at the same time to install new pre-press equipment. The proposed named has changed (formerly dubbed the less stylish Community Meeting Room) since February when the CEO of our parent company - Journal Register Co. - announced his desire to establish Community Media Labs at several newspapers. Our paper wasn't on the original launch list but we proceeded because we felt it was a core component of our effort for our newsroom - and all of our staff - to be integrated into the community in new ways and vice-a-versa.

I need to do a shout-out to three people who were instrumental in making this (and our new pre-press facility installed in February) happen: Randy Pobran, operations director; Mike Furman, building services manager; and resident painter extraordinaire Joe Hack. Once again, they did a project on-time, on-budget and above expectations.

We expect our readers have many more ideas than we do on how to use our Community Media Lab - please drop me a note and share yours.

1 comment:

  1. Great job, looks great, love the tables.