If the media production barriers of the one-to-many model of traditional media are disintegrating with the availability of the cheap, convenient, and dispersed many-to-many network of social media, then these technologies also provide new challenges to us as individuals and organizations.
- As media producers we are now empowered to produce social media capable of worldwide distribution, how do we broadcast a coherent message through the background noise and engage the appropriate audience in dialogue.
- But since we are also consumers of social media, and consumption possibilities remain stubbornly fixed (there are only so many hours in a day), how do we prevent this information abundance from becoming an information overload? How do we access the information that is relevant, accurate, and timely to what we are trying to achieve?
One possible solution could be to provide a centralized hub for information recommended by our peers (and thus most likely to be personalized and relevant), moderated by authorities in the field for accuracy, and updated continually by a network of facilitators.
The Center of Innovation for Media, Conflict, and Peacebuilding at the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) is attempting to do just that with the Peace Media Clearinghouse. This online resource provides a central site where educators, students, organizations, and the community of practitioners working in the conflict management field can access multimedia materials that support conflict analysis and prevention, conflict resolution, and post-conflict reconstruction and reconciliation.
Following a brief demonstration of this online resource, we’ll open up the discussion to explore how other individuals and organizations have addressed these same challenges.