The #SunflowerProject @stephaniedale22 comments

Australia’s political ‘solutions’ to the asylum seeker ‘problem’ are despicable. On this not enough of us agree, but we have mass enough that we ought to be able to make a difference. We march in the streets, we light candles, we share on Facebook, we sign petitions, we express our dismay when this or that news report manages to expose the horrors of life in detention centres on Nauru or Manus Island or when this or that former employee blows the whistle. Yet still absolutely nothing changes. Except for the worse. Usually around election time. What can we do? Our collective helplessness is stupid. Rather than sharing compassionate thoughts for […]

Twitter and the discerning citizen journalist

No Fibs relies on social media to broadcast our news. In particular, we are a Twitter experiment. The wonder of social media is that it enables us to disseminate news quickly – very quickly. Its inherent danger is that is also encourages citizen journalists to spread false information quickly – very quickly. As a citizen journalist your credibility is 100% dependent on your accuracy. Your readers must be able to trust your work and the authenticity of your sources. So how do you check the accuracy of information you find on Twitter? The link above leads to an excellent interview with University of British Columbia educator Alfred Hermida on ABC Radio National’s Media […]

#CSG pilot project winds up: @stephaniedale22 reports

By Stephanie Dale No Fibs CSG editor The pilot No Fibs CSG citizen journalism project is winding up. It’s been an absolutely wonderful project to be involved in – in just four weeks we’ve harnessed the talents of 13 new citizen journalists and triggered the interest of many more. We’ve introduced new writers and showcased new voices in the public news arena. We’ve claimed news space in a highly competitive field, sparking the attention of mainstream news media with CJ Mark Anning‘s piece exposing former Workplace Relations Minister and ABC commentator Peter Reith’s conflicts of interest in the CSG debate. We’ve inspired citizens with no prior writing experience to tap […]

Emerging democracy and the No Fibs Vision: @stephaniedale22 reports

By Stephanie Dale No Fibs – we’re a citizen journalism experiment emboldened by the success of our coverage in the 2013 federal election campaign. And we’re turning our attentions to the robust CSG movement that has emerged along Australia’s east coast. It’s true. We’re upstarts, punching above our weight. During the recent election we had around 25 citizen journalists – CJs – covering their local electorates around the nation. We were the first media to understand that the Voice for Indi campaign, an organised, strategised community-driven bid to unseat the sitting Liberal MP Sophie Mirabella, was on the verge of success. Being community-driven ourselves, we recognised our own. Numerous No […]

Trust, it’s not just about ‘them’: Forde wrap by @StephanieDale22

[clear] By Stephanie Dale 5 September 2013 The other day a smart, savvy, engaged woman I know told me she plans to vote informal on September 7 – her decision has as much to do with media coverage as it does with politics. In short: ” Can’t bring myself to vote for Tony Abbott, can’t forgive Kevin Rudd his asylum seeker policy, none of the small parties have grabbed my attention, underwhelmed by reporting of the campaign.” Here in Forde, the Inane Question of the Campaign Award goes to one of the young TV reporters down from Brisbane to interview the Federal Health Minister, Tanya Plibersek. “Kevin Rudd said he has […]

Australia’s newest political party – interview with the president: @stephaniedale22 reports

By Stephanie Dale 4 September 2013 Talking to Keith Douglas is a lot like trying to talk to a ping-pong ball in a Lotto machine – he talks fast and ranges wide. I met the Australian Voice Party candidate at what has become the No Fibs office in Forde – the nearby Zarraffa’s Coffee outlet (one of many, given the company’s Australian headquarters are up the road). Douglas is not Australian Voice’s founding member, but as president he is its driving force. In an election where new political parties have sprung up like mushrooms after rain from you know where, Australian Voice, registered on July 2, is the nation’s newest political […]

Beattie Surprise: @stephaniedale22 reports

By Stephanie Dale 3 September 2013 We are in the dying days of the 2013 election campaign, a campaign that has boasted a handful of idiot policy announcements but in five weeks just one true surprise – Peter Beattie. It was a laugh out loud moment for the nation when the former Queensland Premier (1998-2007) appeared on the Forde stage with Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to proclaim his bid for a seat in the 44th Australian parliament. In the vivid landscape of my imagination, at that moment only sitting member Bert van Manen was not amused*. The election winds had shifted, the battlefield for Forde changed.  What had appeared to be […]

Bob n Beattie BBQ: @stephaniedale22 reports

[clear] By Stephanie Dale 1 September 2013 There’s been a curious absence of fight in Peter Beattie during the last couple of weeks on the 2013 campaign trail – but today that changed, with the former Queensland Premier charging out of the corner into the Forde ring, following Labor’s campaign launch in Brisbane. Fiiiiiinally, Beattie had something he could stick his teeth into – jobs’ initiatives announced by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd an hour earlier. And he had Australian political royalty to escort to a barbecue organised by the party faithful in Beenleigh – the nation’s most popular living former prime minister, Bob Hawke. Two hundred people in red t-shirts crushed […]

The Greens candidate in Forde, Sally Spain: @stephaniedale22 reports

By Stephanie Dale 30 August 2013 Saturday September 7 is World Endangered Species Day – beautifully timed for an election in which ‘the environment’ (euphemism for the world that is our home) has barely rated a mention. “Where,” I ask Greens candidate for the seat of Forde, Sally Spain, “is the environment in the 2013 election?” We are sitting on an aluminium school bench in a primary school playground where Spain has been teaching for the day, shaded from the afternoon Queensland sun by a mash up garden of gums and palms. Spain is a litany of statistics and understated passion, delivered in her quiet, rhythmic way. “Good point,” she answers […]

Where is the wild space in Forde and the environment in Election13, by @StephanieDale22

By Stephanie Dale 29 August 2013 Mt Warren Park reminds me of the Canberra of my youth. Wide guttered streets, brick houses, schools, laneways shortcutting suburbia, bushy hills in the distance, women in baggy t-shirts mowing lawns, cars with loud exhaust pipes parked on the lawns of mum-n-dad homes. The suburb is on the south-eastern fringe of the federal Division of Forde, and it is not especially representative of the electorate. Then again I’m not sure any particular pocket of the electorate is representative of any other – just that popular narratives about Logan and Beenleigh are stereotypically so (high unemployment, low household incomes, public housing areas, ‘cultural melting pot’, social […]