Workshops

Workshops at ACM West Conference 2023

(Subject to Change)

 

PLENARY SESSIONS (2)

  1. The Role of Community Media in a Changing Media Landscape

What is the role of community media and community access organizations in the changing media technology landscape?  PEG access and community media have existed for over 40 years.  The mission was grounded in the concept of providing a noncommercial space for the expression of a diversity of viewpoints, local information, and the tools, training, and channels for sharing/distributing that information. Is our role and mission and role different than it was at its beginnings?  The discussion will feature voices from multiple generations of people engaged in community media.

 

  1. Community Media Centers Filling the Gap: Local News and Community-Centered Journalism

What are community media centers doing to address the loss of local newspapers and truly local media coverage? Community media centers need to reimagine journalism and develop and support local journalism that is different from the traditional commercial news approach.  What can we learn from the past? How can a new form of community news and journalism evolve?  What are some examples of what’s happening?

 

BREAKOUT WORKSHOPS and ROUNDTABLES

  1. The Role of Community Media in a Changing Media Landscape

What is the role of community media and community access organizations in the changing media technology landscape?  PEG access and community media has existed for over 40 years.  Its mission was grounded in the concept of providing a noncommercial space for the expression of a diversity of viewpoints, local information, and the tools, training, and channels for sharing/distributing that information. Is our role and mission and role different than it was at its beginnings?  The discussion will feature voices from multiple generations of people engaged in community media.

This workshop will be an ongoing discussion further exploring the discussion started during today’s keynote.

 

  1. Strategic Re-Envisioning of Community Media Centers: Providing Vital Services and Building Allies

Today’s CMCs must operate at the convergence of technological change and local communications/media needs to stay relevant and financially sustainable.  How can we ensure that we are offering services that are relevant, vital, and engaging for our communities? How do we figure out what our communities most need?  Who are key allies that can help us achieve our missions? In this session, our panelist/speaker will discuss strategies to assess community needs, build effective programming, and foster relationships with mission-aligned organizations to better serve our communities.

 

  1. Update on Legal, Legislative, and Policy Issues at the Federal and State Levels

An update on what’s happening at the federal and state levels that will impact community media centers.  The latest on legislative activities in states like New York, Maine, Massachusetts, and California can dramatically impact PEG access and community media.  What about the FCC and the need for the appointment of a fifth commissioner and other actions impacting community media?  The status of the Protecting Community Television Act in Congress.  Those in the know will be addressing these and other timely topics.

 

  1. Building a Powerful Team for Your Community Media Center

 Building and maintaining a well-functioning team is about getting and keeping talented people and crossing your fingers that they’ll work well together.  Creating a team culture and its workflow is paramount.  Addressing generational issues and generational change is critical to a well-functioning team. Are we re-envisioning how we work together in addition to the work that we are doing? Pay equity, employee health benefits, building a flexible work environment all of this, and more are key to creating a powerful team at your CMC.

 

  1. Successful Marketing Strategies for the CMC and Local Programming

Marketing has become so much more than posting flyers to a local bulletin board. With limited hours in the day, we tend to struggle while navigating the endless avenues for outreach and community building — TikToks and Reels, email and text campaigns, Discord, and Slack. In this panel, you’ll hear about the successes (and the hard lessons learned!) of community media centers that have transformed their approach to marketing using new and traditional strategies.

 

  1. Cool New Tools

 Technology and new product development cycles move at lightning speed: audiences, content, creators, marketing teams, and producers are always looking for the newest, coolest toys for workflows, design, and effects.  Learn about some innovative software, equipment, and design tools being used at some CMCs (e.g. Trello/Canva)

 

  1. Thinking Outside the Box: New Creative and Innovative Programs and Formats

Description TBA

 

  1. Going Beyond Cable Funding/Diversifying Funding Sources: Opportunities and Successes

In today’s world, Community Media Centers must identify and implement a variety of revenue streams to supplement decreasing cable company revenue.  This workshop will explore a variety of non-cable funding opportunities and present success stories.  This is not an immediate or one-size-fits-all endeavor.  We’ll explore what works and what doesn’t work and how that will vary between large and small CMCs rural, urban or suburban.  You’ll hear from CMCs with budgets from $150,000 to over $4,000,000. Case studies will be presented that will focus on the variety of ways in which each CMC has successfully generated noncable revenue, and stayed true to its mission.

 

  1. Act Now: An Organizing Workshop Focusing on Changes to DIVCA

In 2021, ACM-West’s California members were meaningfully active in the state capital for the first time in many years. While we were not able to advance our bill out of the Assembly, we learned a lot and got our feet wet – for 2022. If at first, you don’t succeed, you try and try again. This workshop will be a working meeting for brainstorming, coordinating, and plugging in for the 2022 effort. We’ll go over the process, review what happened in 2021, analyze the strengths and weaknesses of our previous effort, and map the plan for 2022. You especially want to come if you were involved in 2021, want to be involved in 2022, or want to think about working in your state capital in another state. This will be a working session, not a panel discussion, so plan to come up with ideas and a desire to plug in and help!

 

  1. Building Equity and Inclusion into Every Aspect of the CMC

DEI or Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is the growing and ever-changing field of helping organizations to enhance their abilities to serve community members who belong to traditionally marginalized groups, both as constituents and as workers. How do you create feelings of safety, make space for differences and avoid centering majority points of view and identities to the exclusion of less common points of view and identities? This workshop will provide reasons why DEI should be a top priority for community media centers and steps you can take to implement best practices at your center.

 

  1. Building, Strengthening and Maintaining an Effective Board

Over the past few years, several successful 30+year old access corporations have faced disruptive and destructive scenarios because of board issues that arose.  Sometimes boards are ineffective because board members at best only attend meetings occasionally.  In other cases, the board goes beyond its role of setting policy, promoting the organization, and assisting with building and maintaining financial stability and steps over the line into day-to-day management.  This workshop will address the key factors in building and maintaining an effective board.

 

  1. Attracting and Engaging Youth in Community Media

 How can we ensure that we are responding to the media-making needs of youth creators at a time when the media technology landscape is rapidly changing? In this workshop, we will investigate the ways that community media centers are evolving to meet the needs of their youngest producers and build relevant programming to attract them and keep them engaged. This workshop will be led by a young leader in the field of Community Media.

 

  1. Legal And Practical Issues Surrounding Uses of PEG Funding 

Differences of opinion about how PEG funding (e.g. PEG fees/general funds) can be used are frequently the topic of discussion and debate between local government representatives and community media center management. Is there one definition of capital and equipment that is broadly acknowledged as “accurate”?  This workshop will address the legal and practical issues regarding the uses of PEG funding.

 

  1. Tips and Solutions for Hybrid Public Meetings

Hybrid meetings can offer greater opportunities for community participation and transparency, but there are many obstacles.  This working session will discuss audio/video challenges, data protection, and accessibility, and explore solutions for hybrid meetings.