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Innovation in College Media on the Line
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Where will I be 8-11 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 22? I plan to be in a chat about college media. It will be at

The invitation was wrapped around a brick and thrown through the window on my laptop. Well, not quite. Brick But is was titled, "Professors: Catch up, or we're all left behind."

Uh, I guess that would be me holding everyone back. Hence, the brick.

Since leaving the Free Press in August and becoming a visiting prof at the Michigan State University School of Journalism, I have learned a lot. I hope my students have been as lucky. I've had to buy two video cameras and a podcasting mic so that we could make video slide shows and I have learned about Tumblr as we started blogging. (I have four blogs on TypePad, but wanted to try a new platform.)

I have met some cool profs at MSU: Flashinista Darcy Greene, information graphics guru Gude (Karl) and Bob Gould, late of WZZM-TV, who with his posse has been setting up regular newscasts, covering the Obama rally on campus live. (My class fed quotes and cellphone photos to the Lansing State Journal's Web site.) Just last Friday, Gould made his students, in five hours, report, write, shoot, create multimedia content and post it on the class blog by 2 p.m. Gould had help from Shawn Smith of MLive, who team taught with him. Their blog is on Wordpress at

So, I will join the chat, eager to learn. Although I am proud of some of the things we do and sometimes find it is the professors, not the students, who are leading the charge. I am learning from those students who are already posting, scripting and shooting, but I impatient with myself and want to learn and do more. A few people here have been working hard to overhaul a curriculum so that everyone walking out of this J-school has experience with an array of tools and the foundation to use them well journalistically. We're building it a brick at a time.

But the world is changing so fast! We need to step it up. Big time. This is one of the feelings that propelled me out of a newspaper that I love to do new things. So, I don't mind an occasional brick.

I'll be on the call. Join us:

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