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Global Voices Online Wins Knight-Batten Innovations Award

September 18, 2006

COLLEGE PARK, Md.Global Voices Online, a web site about how news affects daily life and conversations in more than 130 countries, is this year's $10,000 Grand Prize winner in the Knight-Batten Awards for Innovations in Journalism.

The site uses skilled multilingual editors to find and publish thoughtful or entertaining bloggers who discuss what people are talking about in a given country. Blogs are organized by country and by topics. Global Voices Online also uses podcasts to inform readers and start conversations.

“It's an extraordinary site that allows for both editorial gatekeeping and wide access to news and information from underreported parts of the world,” said the panel of judges.

The judges also credited the project and its corps of bloggers with helping to elevate standards in the blogosphere. Global Voices is sponsored by Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society.

The awards were presented at a morning symposium at the National Press Club. Highlighting the event was a keynote address by Alberto Ibargüen, president of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, which funds the awards.

The Knight-Batten Awards spotlight the creative use of new information ideas and technologies to involve citizens in public issues. They are administered by J-Lab: The Institute for Interactive Journalism at the University of Maryland. View the winners as well as 37 other notable entries at www.j-lab.org.

The winners were selected from 109 entries, submitted by print, television and online news organizations and education and nonprofit institutions. TCDailyPlanet last year received some start-up funding under the Knight-funded New Voices program, which J-Lab also administers.
The Knight-Batten Awards for Innovations in Journalism honor the late James K. Batten, former CEO of Knight Ridder newspapers and a pioneer in exploring ways journalism could better connect with audiences.

The winners were selected by an Advisory Board led by Bryan Monroe, vice president and editorial director of EBONY and JET magazines. They included Knight Foundation's Gary Kebbel; Jody Brannon, Senior Editor, MSN.com; Mark Hinojosa, Associate Managing Editor-Electronic News, The Chicago Tribune; Jim Brady, Executive Editor, WashingtonPost.com; Lee Rainie, Executive Director, Pew Internet & American Life Project; Rosental C. Alves, Director, Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas; Chris Harvey, Online Bureau Director & Lecturer, Philip Merrill College of Journalism; Tom Kunkel, Dean, Philip Merrill College of Journalism; and Jan Schaffer, J-Lab Executive Director.

The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation promotes journalism excellence worldwide and invests in the vitality of U.S. communities where the Knight brothers owned newspapers. Since its creation in 1950, the foundation has invested nearly $290 million to advance journalism quality and freedom of expression. For more information on Knight's work, visit www.knightfdn.org.

J-Lab helps news organizations and citizens use new media technologies to create fresh ways for people to participate in public life.

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