I held a one-day workshop on storytelling for Ashoka fellows in Hungary. The interactive and fun training was a great opportunity for the participants to familiarize with the storytelling techniques and find out how they can tap into the huge reservoir of stories in their lives and in their organizations to use them in their communications.
Here is an excerpt of an article from German newsmagazine, Spiegel on the effects of the repressive Hungarian media legislation, four years after it was approved in 2010. My comments and the full article here.
So wie Attila Mong, 45. Aus Protest gegen das Mediengesetz hatte er Ende 2010, damals Nachrichtenmoderator bei Kossuth Rádió, seine Sendung für eine Schweigeminute unterbrochen. Er wurde umgehend vom Dienst suspendiert und fünf Monate später entlassen. Jetzt knöpfe sich die Orbán-Regierung auch die unabhängigen privaten Medien vor, sagt Mong. Anfang Juni beschloss sie für Medienunternehmen eine Sondersteuer auf Werbeeinnahmen - bis zu 40 Prozent der Einnahmen müssen seither an den Staat abgeführt werden. "Damit verschlechtert die Regierung die geschäftlichen Rahmenbedingungen für private Medien", so Mong. "Ihr Ziel ist, dass internationale Eigentümer unabhängiger Medien wie Ringier, Funke oder Bertelsmann aufgeben und das Land verlassen."
The website of the DW Akademie reported on my training in August in Dhaka, Bangladesh during which I helped the team of Radio ABC, a commercial FM radio develop a new radio show on anti-corruption issues. Below a short excerpt of the article, the full version here.
While a new radio program on this deep-seated problem aims to change the status quo, it can be a challenge to develop an informative, engaging show on the topic that also connects with younger listeners. This was the main focus of the two-week workshop for 15 ABC Radio journalists. The project was initiated by the German development organization GIZ with support from Bangladesh's Anti-Corruption Commission. ABC Radio has recently undergone major programming changes and is introducing innovative formats aimed at younger audiences.
Here is an excerpt of an article I wrote for the website of the Committee to Protect Journalists, an international press freedom advocacy organization. Here is the link to the full article.
In response to the deteriorating political and business environment, the independent media have launched several new initiatives as alternative methods to make operations sustainable. 444, a website mixing investigative content with tabloid-style features, has succeeded in attracting international venture capital. Atlatszo launched a crowdfunding campaign to attract 4,000 supporters with the aim of having its basic operations financed by its audience. Some of the journalists who left Origo created the news site Abcug, which takes no advertising, is financed by American businessman Robert Field, and focuses on underreported topics in the Hungarian media. And Sáling, and Origo's most prominent investigative journalist, András Pethő, founded the non-profit Investigative Journalism Center. "Our goal is to focus on classical, deep investigative journalism and data-driven projects, and the financing of the center will follow the well-known models," Pethő told CPJ.
I held a highly interactive 2-day storytelling workshop in Warsaw for NGOs funded by the Open Society Foundation in Central and Eastern Europe from Poland to Romania focusing on equality issues. The workshop was a great opportunity for participants to discover their own and their organization's storytelling potential.