We are charging ahead with the Tandem Project, developed by a team of students this past year as part of the Innovation Incubator Project. Partnering with The Detroit News on the project, we hope for a launch in summer if we can get software issues handled.

Tandem hits at the very heart of community journalism. The idea is to have news stories percolate from local communities. Community members on a wiki-style site start discussing issues they are facing within their neighborhoods. It may be street lights that are not working, gang issues, or turning local vacant lots into farm gardens. Community members begin filing their comments on the web site, maybe taking photos, detailing local governments response to request—whatever. When the story matures, a reporter gets involved with already identified sources, maybe photos and video clips.

J-School students will be involved since news staffs are so stretched. It’s a terrific opportunity for them.