Join us for ‘Ground Truth in Open Internet’ — the new Creative Commons Open Journalism Webinar Series and Training

Jennryn Wetzler
“Carry The Truth Forward” by Teo Georgiev for Fine Acts licensed CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Journalism provides a crucial public service. Access to verifiable information and stories that question the underlying terrain of power is critical to democratic societies. Yet, journalism as we know it faces existential new challenges. Increasingly, journalists face work-halting financial and ethical challenges, as well as threats to their physical and digital safety, when sharing information online. Misinformation and disinformation campaigns in the media challenge collective notions of ground truth. They challenge the bedrock and meaning of open internet.

Journalism also faces newfound opportunities, as the tectonic plates of power shift in our shared digital landscape. We witness the rising role of nonprofit media sources, filling gaps where traditional media organizations have shuttered; the rising power of crowdsourcing information and fact checking, and a powerful new role an open internet can play in knowledge sharing.

Introducing our Ground Truth in Open Internet Series

Join us as we explore what public, open options our news needs, and how to take advantage of these options. Through particular cases in Brazil, Croatia, India, the US, as well as global examples, the webinar series explores topics of: 

  • Online narrative power as social power
  • Access to information and paywalls in the time of COVID
  • How to address mis & disinformation campaigns shifting the focus of traditional news audiences
  • The rising role of nonprofit media and the gap they fill
  • Open licensed media

This webinar series will culminate in a ½ day training providing: 

  • Copyright basics for journalists
  • Tools for open access research
  • Access to usable photo and media archives
  • How to best use openly-licensed media

Key Dates and Session Information

Open Internet and Journalism

  • January 20, 7:00 pm UTC/2:00 pm EST
  • Speaker: Ashley Edwards, US Partnerships Manager, Google News Initiative
  • Speaker: Catherine Stihler, CEO of Creative Commons
  • To kick off the discussion series, Google News Initiative and Creative Commons will reflect on the challenges and opportunities at the intersection of technology, journalism, and social power.

Addressing Misinformation and Disinformation Campaigns: a Community Led Approach

Risks with Digital Platforms: Language and Narrative Power 

*Unfortunately the recording for this session is not available*

Gunfire and Ground Truth: Investigative Journalism Using Creative Commons

  • February 15, 2:00 pm UTC/ 9:00 am EST
  • Speaker: Cecília Oliveira, Investigative Journalist and founder of Fogo Cruzado
  • Cecília Oliveira will discuss developing and using crowd-sourcing on an open platform as an investigative tool in journalism focused on drug and arms trafficking. In 2016, frustrated with the lack of publicly available data, she began mapping every shooting in Rio de Janeiro. This effort turned into Fogo Cruzado, an open data platform on armed violence that is spreading to every major city in Brazil.

CC licenses and Combatting Disinformation Campaigns

  • March 3, 2:00 pm UTC/ 9:00am EST
  • Speaker: Shalini Joshi, co-founder of Khabar Lahariya and Program Director at Meedan, a global technology non-profit (India)
  • Speaker: Joel Abrams, Director of Digital Strategy and Outreach at The Conversation (US)
  • This discussion will explore how CC licenses increase information sharing in global journalism. Speakers will share anecdotes from Meedan’s The Checklist, a weekly roundup of global misinformation news—open-source investigations, industry resources and event information. Discussion will also target The Conversation, a nonprofit network of 8 international news sites publishing hundreds of useful articles of news and analysis each week, all written by experts, in 4 languages, and all available under the Creative Commons license, CC-BY-ND.

Free Online Training

  • March 23, 2:00 pm-6:00 pm UTC/ 10:00 am-2:00 pm EDT
  • Creative Commons staff will provide free training on the basics of copyright for journalists, how to best find and reuse openly licensed resources such as research, photos, videos, music and more!  Come away from the training, understanding the flexibilities within copyright law that journalists can harness for better information sharing. Journalists will also gain the practical tools and resource lists to take advantage of open licensed content. All are welcome to join. 

Overview of CC and Community Networking

Copyright Basics: a “101” Level Training on International Copyright and CC Licenses

How to Use CC Licenses and Find Open Media

Open Practices, and Copyright: Q&A Discussion with CC Deputy General Counsel Kat Walsh and CC Director of Open Knowledge, Dr. Cable Green

Google News: Overview of Free Training Options with Google News Teaching Fellow, Mary Nahorniak


Join us for our Ground Truth in Open Internet series from January to March 2022 from wherever you are, as we explore what public, open options our news and media need, and how we can use these options.