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RJI research brief will serve as basis of panel discussion at Social Media Week next week in New York

Who sets the news agenda in the social media age? How can news organizations maintain a sense of substance and gain useful insights from the community without falling victim to hype or hyperbole? These will be among the questions considered in a discussion led by The Associated Press at Social Media Week in New York on Feb. 25.

Clockwise from top left: Lou Ferrara, AP vice president and managing editor; Lisa George, associate professor of economics at Hunter College; Tom Namako, news assignment editor at BuzzFeed News; David Reiter, vice president of news gathering at ABC News; Elizabeth Spiers, founding editor of Gawker and former editor-in-chief of The New York Observer; Miklos Sarvary, head of Media Program at Columbia Business School.

Moderated by AP Vice President and Managing Editor Lou Ferrara, the panel will use a new research brief from the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute at the Missouri School of Journalism titled, “Setting or Chasing the Agenda: Who Controls the news?” to inspire a candid conversation. Panelists include:

  • Lisa George, associate professor of economics, Hunter College
  • Tom Namako, news assignment editor at BuzzFeed News
  • David Reiter, vice president of news gathering at ABC News
  • Miklos Sarvary, head of the Media Program at Columbia Business School
  • Elizabeth Spiers, founding editor of Gawker and former editor-in-chief of The Observer

The hourlong event starts at 3:30 p.m. ET at the Highline Stages, 441 West 14th Street, in New York, and is open to Social Media Week attendees. Registration is required. Follow the discussion on Twitter using the following hashtag: #SMWNewsagenda. The event expands on AP’s efforts to connect academics and media professionals in an open exchange of data and ideas. For example, AP hosts a series of media seminars that brings together some of the world’s leading media scholars. In collaboration with the Reynolds Journalism Institute, AP is planning other events in 2015 that will seek to stimulate discussion and inform news industry transformation. “We’re excited to help the news industry tap one of the biggest sources of knowledge and insights — academic research — to foster dialogue and help navigate through disruption,” said Francesco Marconi, a strategist for AP who is leading the research initiative. Randy Picht, executive director of the Reynolds Journalism Institute, added: “If you think about all of the new opportunities and challenges for the news industry and the gigantic amount of data to analyze and research, you would have to agree that now is the right time to make use of academic research.”

About AP

The Associated Press is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news from every corner of the world to all media platforms and formats. Founded in 1846, AP today is the most trusted source of independent news and information. On any given day, more than half the world's population sees news from AP. On the Web: www.ap.org.

About the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute

The Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute works with citizens, journalists and researchers to strengthen democracy through better journalism. RJI seeks out the most exciting new ideas, tests them with real-world experiments, uses social science research to assess their effectiveness and delivers solutions that citizens and journalists can put to use in their own communities.

Contact

Paul Colford Director of Media Relations The Associated Press 212-621-1895 pcolford@ap.org Erin Madigan White Sr. Media Relations Manager The Associated Press 212-621-7005 emadigan@ap.org Brian Steffens Director of Communications Reynolds Journalism Institute 573-882-8251 steffensb@rjionline.org



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