EBTICAR's jury gathered on 8 and 9 July 2014 at Villa Méditerranée, in Marseille, to select future grantees out of 28 projects presented and defended by the candidates.
These projects were previously shortlisted by the jury, based on their written proposal, among the 130 projects that responded to the call for proposals launched April 7, 2014.
The high quality of all the competing projects required the jury to convene, for the second time, on the morning of July 10 to finalize the selection.
At the end of this meeting 11 projects were retained:
Arablog aims to create a platform to bring together bloggers from various different Arab countries. In parallel, a team of professionals in Northern Africa, supported by France Médias Monde, is offering young Arabic-language bloggers the opportunity to strengthen their editorial and technical skills in web journalism. Arablog ultimately aims to the bring blogging to professional standards. Blogging is set to play key role in the democratic, social and political changes underway, allowing young bloggers to stimulate dialogue and debate on matters of public interest.
Faced with the growing tendency of governments to erase all traces of sensitive documents from the Internet where they can be accessed publicly, ARIJ aims to identify, download, acquire and digitize data from open sources online and offline in the Middle East, Northern Africa and the Gulf region. ARIJ also plans to create a platform that will index these documents, thus providing journalists with access to data in spite of government censorship, so as to ensure respect for democratic mechanisms and data transparency in the Arab world, and thus foster investigative journalism, in particular on anti-corruption issues.
An experimental method currently being developed by FRAME, collective documentary mobilizes diverse groups to examine a subject through documentary photography. In Lebanon, where political divisions are reflected in urban geography, collective documentary challenges the status quo by ensuring a diversity of perspectives on one platform. Through this diversity we begin identifying patterns in thinking, expressed through similarities and contradictions in the documentary choices of participants in relation to specific concepts and themes. FRAME aspires to partner with issue-based advocacy organizations and activate the model in a way that leads to productive public dialogue and understanding of specific issues f acing our city through the eyes and lenses of its inhabitants. In this spirit, the models principles are the following: representation and inclusiveness; openness, mutual respect, and volition; the right to observe; positive intention; and responsibility within collective action.
Inkyfada is a Tunisian long-form web magazine created and run by independent journalists, dedicated to providing information that is key to understanding and stimulating reflection on Tunisian society. Focusing on emerging issues, its goal is to offer the general public reliable, well-researched content. This webzine is committed to consolidating the role of journalism in Tunisia's transition to democracy, its priority being to win the confidence of the public.
Innova Tunisia, which specialises in big data for digital media, is launching, in partnership with Huffington Post Maghreb, a media innovation platform that offers a series of tools to support online investigative journalism, data visualisation, fact-checking and monitoring of social media. Available in the Maghreb region, it will collect in real time the millions of publications produced by the tens of thousands of sources in the region such as online newspapers, blogs, forums and social media. An experimental co-working space will also be set up in Tunisia, bringing together a selection of media partners who are working to develop data journalism.
New Syrian Voices is working to develop and maintain digital tools to support emerging citizen journalists. "Syrie, Journaux intimes de la Révolution", produced in collaboration with DKB productions, is a collection of short videos recorded by four journalists, presented as a chronological narrative. This interactive platform aims to become a model of alternative information production. It offers training and professional development to journalists who are willing to report on the situations in besieged towns and cities and give this suppressed society a voice, while producing quality online information that is likely to be of interest to the media.
Mashallah News has plans to restyle its news site, which is fed by nearly a hundred volunteer contributors in the region, by increasing interactivity and incorporating multimedia tools into its articles and special reports. The newsroom wants to archive and enhance the 450 articles already published, using an interactive map that presents the stories geographically as well as by organising them according to subject and angle. The redesign of the site should enable wider access to the entire archive and improve the overall user experience.
RadioM is a private online news radio station broadcasting in Arabic and French. The project ultimately hopes to expand its current offering of podcasts into a full, diverse schedule with a continuous stream of news and magazine programmes. RadioM is supported by the newsroom of online economic newspaper Maghreb Emergent, founded in 2010, from whose expert assistance it will benefit.
Over the past two years, two citizen media – Tunisie Bondy Blog and Speak Out Tunisia – have introduced around a hundred young people to the basics of blogging and journalism. They promote the regular publication of quality local news content on pactetv.com and on Tunisie Bondy Blog. This project offers recruitment, training and placements in professional media newsrooms to 30 future citizen journalists who will ensure news is reported in areas not covered by the national media. A revamp of the SOT and TBB sites is also planned to make them more user-friendly.
The aim of VisualizingX is to set up a global network of citizen data journalists, in particular in Arab countries. The team started by creating an innovative tool to transform complex data into powerful, attractive visual narratives for social justice. It now wants to refine and share its model, to encourage those campaigning for change to develop their data journalism skills. As part of the project, VX will make the Vizualizing Impact development process available to all via open source and develop a platform in support of the data journalist community.
Candidates who have not been selected will be individually contacted during the week of July 14 to receive comments from the jury. That will also be the case of projects retained under conditions.
EBTICAR's team wishes to thank all candidates and members of the jury for their presence and the quality of their engagement, and invites non-selected candidates to revise their project and to apply again in early 2015.