283Fwd: Fw: NEW ONLINE PROJECT: Request for volunteering for a mediamonitoring/archiving project (Read carefully)
- Mar 9, 2002> >BismillahirRahmanirRahim,> >> >AssalamuAlaikum Brothers and Sisters,> >> >I hope you and your families are in the best of health and happiness,> >InshaAllah.> >> >This mail is an invitation for you to join in a project designed for the> >purpose of media monitoring and archiving, with regards to coverage of> >issues related to Islam and Muslims in the media. The main motivation is> >to have such articles archived, in an electronic [textual email] format,> >in a central location for the purpose of reading, reference and research.> >This archive will serve as important tool for muslim activists,> >volunteers, speakers, teachers and students etc. [More details are in the> >attached file called MediaArchiving.html ].> >> > This is going to be a grassroots effort and everyone's effort is going to> >be needed to make this project a success. Please read the attached html> >file which gives the details of the project. Note that this is very simple> >effort on each individual's part, since one can do this work at their own> >time and convenience, and you don't need to go to any place to do this> >volunteering. All it needs is that you have a computer with internet> >access. In simple words, this is web-surfing for a cause ;) You can do> >this work in the comfort of your homes etc. In fact, it is also be a good> >project for your spouses to participate.> >> > Please forward this email [along with the attachment] to as many people> >as you can, so that the word is spread around, and people can take part in> >the project.> >> > Please let me know if you have any questions/comments. My email is> >sajedahmed@...> >> >JazakAllah Khair for your time and patience, Your brother in Islam Sajed.> >> >> >-------> >> >Electronic Islamic Media-monitoring and Archiving Network (EIMAN)> >Project Description and Invitation to Join> >Bismillah hir Rahman nir Rahim (In the name of Allah, the Beneficent,> >the Merciful)> >> >As Salaamu Alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatahu> >> >Goal> >Our goal is to, InshaAllah, establish an Islamic electronic media archive,> >to provide a reservoir of information for analysis and research for the> >benefit of Muslims and Islam all over the world. The project is to> >collectively monitor the electronic media outlets and archive the relevant> >news and articles, related to Islam and/or Muslims.> >> >Motivation> >> >What Could We Do With This Archive?> >All important news articles regarding Islam and Muslims are readily> >available at one location, for reference, reading and serious research> >and analysis. A simple example of reference: if you were preparing a> >presentation/speech and you wanted some facts/figures from some leading> >mainstream media sources, you can use this archive to do your research and> >get the relevant information. For example, if you want to query for "all> >articles by Thomas Friedman on terrorism in new york times", all you need> >to do is go to this archive and search for "thomas friedman terrorism> >nytimes" and you will see all such articles.> >> >Another point with respect to reference, is the credibility of your> >source. For example, if you wanted to present a fact that "none of the> >1400+ individuals arrested in the FBI dragnet were charged with anything> >related to the New york attacks" etc, it does not carry as much effect on> >the audience as quoting from the mainstream media itself, like, "According> >to USA Today, in a article published on January 20, 2002, none of the> >1400+ individuals arrested in the FBI dragnet were charged with anything> >related to the New york attacks". And to be able to refer to the articles> >in the mainstream media, you need to know about their location and> >existence in the first place. And this project proposes to address that> >issue by having the articles archived.> >> >In the last few months, there has been a tremendous focus on Islam, and> >there has been a lot of coverage in the media, both positive coverage as> >well as negative coverage. And thats where the main motivation of this> >project comes: use the positive coverage effectively to increase awareness> >and dispel the negative stereotyping etc.> >> > In this way, this archive will serve as a valuable tool for the Muslim> >activists, thinkers, scholars, students, teachers etc.> >Strategy> >> >Monitor the electronic media through grass-roots effort for material> >relevant to Islam and Muslims all over the world. This means monitoring> >not only the mainstream media outlets [like New York Times or Washington> >Post or BBC], but also non-mainstream media outlets like zMag, Independent> >etc. Also included are transcripts of TV or radio shows if available. The> >aim is to archive not just the positive but also the negative coverage of> >Islam/Muslims.> >> >Archive the full textual content of the relevant news/analysis articles in> >(email) text format with references to the original source by having the> >actual link, so that the content is available even when the original link> >becomes obsolete or is removed from the original web sites. (This way, we> >also avoid any copyright issues.)> >> >Take full advantage of other groups and websites that have been collecting> >such material and thus minimize redundancy.> >> >Store the articles after proper categorization and review, in an easily> >searchable database.> >> >Comparative Analysis> >> >Aren't there other projects/web-sites that do this? Actually, the work> >envisaged in this project is currently being done, on a shorter scale, by> >some mailing lists and web-sites, like ININ, AMILAnet, CAIR-net,> >PMWatch.org, ICNA.org, oureffort2001.com, zMag etc. But there are a few> >shortcomings:> >> >Content not available all the time: this is the most common problem. Most> >sites try to collect a whole bunch of links to other web-sites. In doing> >so they run into two problems, one of which is that the links themselves> >will become invalid after some time.> >> >Content not searchable across all sources: most sites have this second> >problem that you cannot do meaningful searches for articles across all> >sources etc.> >> >Not comprehensive: they do not have exhaustive list of material available> >so that later we can dependably go and find something we are looking for.> >And particularly lacking in a lot of sites is coverage from mainstream> >media. Most try to go to "alternative" media sources, and do not cover> >mainstream sources as much.> >> >Given the above set of problems, EIMAN project hopes to provide an answer> >to all of the above issues.> >> >Our content is always available because we do not just save the links, but> >also the textual content itself.> >> >Our content is searchable across all sources because we keep it all in one> >place.> >> >Our goal is to be comprehensive and get all the relevant articles. We want> >to get articles from mainstream media sources, not just alternative media> >sources. And as mentioned before, we will archive both the positive as> >well as the negative coverage.> >> >This project is closest to the ININ archives [> >http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ININ ] in terms of format and methodology,> >and to PMWatch.org web-site in terms of structure and approach.> >> >> >The Project> >> >The effort has the following three stages:> >> >I. Selection: Selection and collection of news items and articles based> >on specified criteria and in an accessible format. This is done by> >emailing the article in an specified format to the following yahoogroup:> >email@example.com. This document basically talks about this phase of> >the project. If you wish to take part in this part of the project, the> >details are given below.> >> >II. Categorization and Review: Next is to organize, categorize and> >keyword the articles. If interested in volunteering in this stage of the> >project, please email sajedahmed@....> >> >III. Analysis and Research: The Islamic think tank, which this effort is a> >part of, will use these categorized articles for research and analysis. If> >interested in this phase or in the think tank, please email> >uwaymir@....> >> >Details about the phase I (Selection phase) of the project:> >What to archive:> >> >The candidates for such archiving include news articles, columnists,> >special features, editorials, op-ed columns, letters to editor [if> >worthwhile], transcripts of relevant TV or radio shows, magazine articles> >etc.> >> >Which sites to scan for material:> >> >Here is a partial list of sites. Please suggest more sites. BBC,> >Independent, Guardian, NY Times, WashingtonPost, Boston Globe, LA times,> >Chicago Tribune, Denver Post, Detroit Free Press, San Jose Mercury News,> >SF Chronicle, Seattle Times, Oregonian, Wall Street Journal, Philadelphia> >Enquirer, CNN, ABCNews, Fox News, Times of India, The Hindu, The Dawn,> >Lebanon Daily Star, Jerusalem Post, Haaretz, Cato Institute, Christian> >Science Monitor, BeliefNet, Village Voice, Salon, Time, Newsweek,> >Frontline, Yahoo Full Coverage, ICNA links, iViews, oureffort2001 links,> >zmag.org, the transcripts of NPR shows, CNN shows etc. I am sure there are> >more sites that can be looked at that I do not know of, so please feel> >free to add more.> >> >Criteria of Selection> >The topic/subject of the material must fall within the following criteria:> >> >The subject must be relevant to the affairs of Muslims or Islam. Avoid> >other vast topics such as Islamic fiqh, fatawa etc that are already dealt> >with by dedicated sites for that purpose.> >The content should be serious and of long-term value for Islam and> >Muslims.> >> >Avoid sending news items of transient or short-term focus unless some news> >item is especially enlightening.> >> >Avoid items with repetitive and mundane arguments as much as you can.> >Sometimes, there can be articles that are not directly related to> >Islam/muslims but are indirectly related. For example, articles on civil> >rights in the US, and how the civil rights are getting eroded etc are also> >relevant for this archive.> >> >Method and Format (How to)> >> >A yahoo group for this purpose called firstname.lastname@example.org. Once you have> >found that an item meets our selection criteria, email it to> >email@example.com.> >> >Please follow the following guidelines: Each article needs to be in plain> >text format. Please turn off any html or other fancy settings from your> >email program. Each article is sent via email, and the email's subject and> >body should follow these guidelines:> >> >> >1. Subject: The subject should have the following 4 fields:> >> > : : :> >The field can have only one of the following values: NEWS> >(general news), COMMENTARY (opinions, analysis and feature articles, at> >newspaper level of depth), RESEARCH (Serious research paper. Academic or> >from a think tank), EDITORIAL (for editorials) , MISC (undecided> >category).> >> >Example:> >> > NEWS: WashingtonPost: More than a thousand caught in the INS dragnet> >> >2. Body: The body should first have the actual link to the article itself.> >And then the textual content of the article. And at the bottom, we should> >try to have the copyright statement from the web-site itself, like for> >example: 2001 The Washington Post Company .> >Example:> >> >http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/front/la-092301stans.story> >> >Crisis Puts New Focus on 'Stans' of Central Asia> >> >By MAURA REYNOLDS> >September 23 2001> >MOSCOW -- Collectively, they are sometimes called "the stans."> >Individually, as the United States prepares for possible military action> >in their neighborhood, the stans are suddenly the focus of intense> >attention in Washington and Moscow........> >......> >......> >Copyright 2002 Los Angeles Times> >Some points to note:> >> >1. Avoid hard-breaks. There are a couple of good ways of getting the> >entire text of the article without the hard-breaks: most sites have a> >Printer friendly version button in each article, use that to cut and paste> >into your email client.> >> >2. Note that we do not want to have just the links because links can> >become invalid after a period of time. So please make sure to have the> >entire content, along with the link.> >> >3. Also note that firstname.lastname@example.org will ONLY be used to collect> >articles. Please do not post any replies etc to this group.> >> >4. To see an example of how articles have been archived, you can go to the> >link http://groups.yahoo.com/group/EIMAN/messages .> >How to join the EIMAN project> >> >I highly encourage everyone to join this project. It is a painless and> >InshaAllah a rewarding grassroots effort. One of the most attractive> >things about this volunteer effort is that you can do this media> >monitoring in your time, at your own convenience. You dont even have to> >attend any meetings ;-) Remember all that is required is that whenever> >you surf the web and come across something interesting, you capture the> >content and the link and send the email over to the list> >[email@example.com]. Thats it. So, in other words, you already surf> >the web anyways, why not do it for a cause!!> >> >In order to join this project, please become a member of this group by> >sending an email to EIMANfirstname.lastname@example.org.> >> >"Sign up" to monitor a particular web-site(s). Once you do that, In order> >to "sign up", please send an email to sajedahmed@... and give the> >name and website of the media outlet that you would like to monitor. Once> >you get back a conformation email, it becomes your responsibility to keep> >track of all the news/articles/editorials etc on that web-site that are> >related to Islam/muslims. Thats it! From then on, you are the responsible> >person for that website! For that particular web-site, it becomes your> >responsibility to keep scanning it for any Islam/muslims related articles.> >You can then keep sending the mails to email@example.com.> >> >To see a list of which sites have already been signed up for, and who has> >signed up to which site etc, go to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/EIMAN/ .> >On the left side of the page, you will see a link called "Database". Once> >you click this, you will see a list of tables. Click on the table titled> >"Website Sign-up Sheet". It will show you a table of 4 columns: Website> >name, Website link, Responsible person's name, Responsible person's email.> >> >Even if you do not want to volunteer to monitor etc, but just want to read> >all the articles collected, you can always just go to the link at> >http://groups.yahoo.com/group/EIMAN/ and do so. Or, if you just want to> >get daily emails [individual/digest-mode], you need to become a member of> >the group by sending an email to EIMANfirstname.lastname@example.org.> >> >If you have any questions/comments etc, please feel free to mail me at> >sajedahmed@....> >> >Also, please spread the word about this project to any of your friends> >that might be interested in joining this project and urge them to join in.> >Forward this mail to anyone you know could potentially be interested in> >joining in the effort.> >> >JazakAllah Khair for your patience. I hope that you will join in this> >effort, InshaAllah. Please forgive my mistakes.> >> >Wassalam,> >Sajed [Coordinator for the EIMAN project] [Email: sajedahmed@...]>
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