Last week Youth Media Agency sent 2 Creative Associates and aspiring journalists, Elizabeth and William to the Transformational Media Summit 2012.  YMA is proud to be involved and create partnerships with organisations and individuals who are creating a movement towards more positive and balanced media  – here is the article they wrote about their experience.

 Youth Media Agency at the Transformational Media Summit 2012

Elizabeth Renfrey and William Hewstone

Can the Olympic Games provide a legacy that will change out media for the better? Martin Lewis, CBE, a veteran broadcaster, thinks so. Recently, speaking to ‘Positive News’ he said “We’ve had this incredible wave of good public mood during the Olympics. People’s attitude to life has been changing with all the good news around. I want a more balanced news agenda, which treats good newsworthy stories in the same way as negative stories.”

“There is still a sense that something is only really news if it’s going wrong – that bad news sells.”

This was the dominant agenda at the Transformational Media 2012 Summit, a conference that the Youth Media Agency sent us to investigate. We were treated to inspiring talks from some of the leaders in innovative media, journalists and prominent Media academics.

Cathrine Gyldensted, who is an investigative reporter and White House Correspondent, inspired us by believing in a more positive news agenda.  She pointedly called negative journalism “being only half the journalists we could be”. Afterwards, she described the conference as “one that I believe definitely will be providing momentum for an intelligent change in news reporting for more stories on the positives,” including those referring to feral youths, yobs and louts, a leading argument in our#pressChange4Youth campaign.

Maddy Harland, editor of Permaculture mag, Anna Cootes, of NEF, Ella Saltmarsh and Jarvis Smith, founder of Green Magazine made up the final panel of the day.  One point this panel stressed is how easy it is to present negative media and how this needs to change.  Jarvis Smith gave the example of his time spent on the television show ‘Dumped’ where the press wrote more  about the fact that the rubbish tip on the show was just a set than the positive environmental lessons the team and the audience learnt from the show. We discussed ways of getting through to your target audience using different types of media, like Youth Media.

The Transformational Media Summit was an inspiring day for everyone, especially Michael and I. The momentum of positivity that could be felt throughout the day was incredibly motivating as everyone campaigned and networked, each with the aim of increasing positive media and promoting practical solutions whether it was about the environment, world poverty or in our case to talk to people about or #press4changeyouth campaign.

#presschange4youth is currently calling for balanced reporting of young people in the UK and through the Youth Media Agency membership of over 70 youth media organisations we hope to bridge the gap between youth and mainstream media.

See our latest campaign video here made by young people


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“The Youth Media Agency is truly a remarkable organisation. Acting like a family to all youth media platforms, if you need help, guidance or simply some encouragement, they are definitely who you should turn to.”

Matteo Bergamini
Founder, Shout Out UK

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