Another Lesson For NGS, Courtesy of NPR


… An unusual gathering took place in San Francisco on Friday: NPR corralled about sixty Bay Area technology thought leaders—innovators, entrepreneurs, strategists, and investors—put them in a bunch of conference rooms, and asked them to brainstorm ideas for the network’s digital future. NPR called it a “Digital Think In.”

The goal was to come up with ideas that would help NPR’s digital teams “create a more informed public.” A key requirement was that all ideas had to be things the network could realistically implement within the next five years….

The “open kimono” approach was another unusual aspect of Friday’s gathering. Instead of keeping the discussions behind closed doors, NPR opened them up, broadcasting live from the group sessions and live-blogging and tweeting from the breakout groups. Reporters were invited to attend the event, and participants were notified that all discussions would be “on the record.” The thinking is that the more brains NPR can get working on the challenges it faces, the better the ideas that will be generated.

Clay Shirky

Clay Shirky

“Clay Shirky talks about how there’s no way any single organization, no matter how smart the individuals inside it are, can respond to the pace at which things are changing,” Wilson said. [Kinsey Wilson is NPR’s senior vice president and general manager for digital media.] The value of allowing people to come into the conversation will exceed whatever you give up in terms of proprietary ideas.”

— from NPR Builds a Brain Trust, by E.B. Boyd
in the Columbia Journalism Review

photo of Clay Shirky via

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