Rappler team introduced on January 12


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Rappler harnesses technology, the collective wisdom of crowds, and professional journalists

TECHNOLOGY. Students eager to learn how to tell stories using new technology.

MANILA, Philippines – New player in online journalism Rappler.com will be introduced on January 12, Thursday, by big names in journalism.

“Social Media for Social Change,” a half-day event at the Far Eastern University (FEU) in Manila will bring together broadcast journalists Maria Ressa, former CNN Jakarta bureau chief, Cheche Lazaro of Probe, and Veronica Pedrosa of Al Jazeera English. Ressa is the CEO and executive editor of Rappler. Probe’s Lazaro is editor-at-large.

This is the third leg of the chat series that began in Baguio City in September and continued in Davao City in November 2011. Each event was attended by about 500, mostly students.

The event in Manila will be held at the FEU auditorium and will start with registration at 8:00 am. Students and other members of academe, NGOs, members of the diplomatic community and the media, among others, are expected to attend. The “Social Media for Social Change” chat series is sponsored by Rappler’s citizen journalism arm, Move.PH.

The program begins with FEU president Lydia B. Echauz giving the opening remarks. Veronica Pedrosa, Al Jazeera anchor, will be keynote speaker. The program ends with a peek into the Rappler newscast, a mini-news broadcast that will be livestreamed at the Rappler website at 8 pm daily. Interested participants may register online.

What sets Rappler apart

Citizen journalism will be an important feature of the new multimedia social news network, says Ressa. This is in recognition of the changing and rapidly evolving nature of journalism: given the availability of technology, anyone who aspires to be one can be a journalist.

“Rappler comes from the root words ‘rap,’ to discuss, and ‘ripple,’ to make waves. It’s a new world of limitless collaboration enabled by new technology and connected by social media,” she says. Rappler harnesses technology, the collective wisdom of crowds, and professional journalists.

Aside from Ressa and Lazaro, Rappler is led by veteran journalists trained in broadcast, print, and web disciplines. Among them are Newsbreak founders Marites Vitug, Glenda Gloria, and Chay Hofileña. The investigative group, known for its independence, is now a partner of Rappler. Newsbreak has its own section in the Rappler website, alongside Move.PH.

Vitug is Rappler editor-at-large; Gloria is managing editor; and Hofileña is news, citizen journalism and engagement director.

Rappler has a Facebook page and a Twitter account, with Twitter handle @rapplerdotcom.

Another feature of Rappler.com is its mood meter. Visitors can click on the emotion evoked by the stories they read. Ressa explains, “Studies show that up to 80% of the way people make decisions in their lives are determined by the way they feel. Neuroscientists also say the act of labeling emotions increases our ability to reason.”

She adds, “Globally, emotions are spreading quickly through large swathes of societies with both positive and negative effects… We hope our hearts and minds approach will help encourage greater self-awareness and lead to greater transparency and responsibility – for each of us and our societies.” – Rappler.com

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