Thursday, May 21, 2009

NYC Grassroots Media Conference: HOPE TO ACTION

I am serving as a panelist at The Sixth Annual NYC Grassroots Media Conference.

Here's the press release about the conference:

The Sixth Annual NYC Grassroots Media Conference: HOPE TO ACTION
Co-Sponsored by the Film and Media Department at Hunter College, CUNY
9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, May 30
Hunter College, 68th Street & Lexington Avenue, Manhattan

On May 30th, the New York City Grassroots Media Coalition (NYCGMC) will host its sixth annual conference at Hunter College. The conference theme Hope to Action invites participants to consider how we can build a media network that ensures the visibility of our communities' voices, images and stories. Conference workshops will explore how we can use the media tools at our disposal to turn HOPE for social justice into ACTION in our communities.

The conference first convened in 2004 by a volunteer collective of media activists and organizations responding to the FCC’s moves to further deregulate media control and diversity. The annual conference is part of an ongoing effort to build bridges between New York City's diverse social justice and grassroots media communities to better realize our common goals for social change. To date, approximately 300 organizations and 4,500 independent media makers and community organizers have participated in NYC Grassroots Media Coalition’s conferences.

This year's conference comes on the heels of a historic 2008 election season that was fueled by an unprecedented level of community based organizing, and highlighted the power that can be mobilized by the grassroots. Even as we celebrate, uncertainty looms ahead. Many of us have lost our jobs, our insurance, and our economic stability; many of our independent media producers and social justice organizations face diminished financial support and increasing barriers. In this moment of great opportunity and great challenge, the NYC Grassroots Media community asks: What role can the media play as a catalyst for social justice?

The Sixth Annual Conference will host more than 40 informative panels and skill-sharing workshops, a daylong film festival, art exhibits, and musical performances. Featured panels include immigrant rights groups strategizing on how they can use media to debunk stereotypes, editors of independent publications confronting the crisis in journalism, and prison justice activists developing a media platform. Hands-on workshop tutorials will cover how to organize via social networking tools, activist mural making, hip-hop activism, community radio production, and more.

The conference continues its commitment to elevating youth voices and empowering young people to make their own media by providing various workshops for, about, and led by New York City teenagers. To further engage young media makers, on May 14, NYCGMC in partnership with the Youth Media Reporter/Academy for Educational Development will host a screening of youth produced media at 100 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY.

The NYCGMC works in partnership with a variety of locally based organizations to design the theme and content of the conferences. 2009 Partners include representatives from Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting,, Indypendent, Alliance for Community Media, Left Turn magazine, LGBT Center, Manhattan Neighborhood Network, MAGNet, Radical Reference, Youth Media Reporter, Listen Up! and others.

More details about our current and past programs can be found at To register and to pay online, go to the site. Prices range from $5 to $20 to register for the conference.
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