Journalism & Data at MozFest: We want your session ideas

At the Mozilla Foundation's annual festival for the open web, OpenNews organizes two tracks of hands-on hacking and building focused on journalism and data. The call for proposals is open till August 29, so get pitching!

What happens at MozFest?

MozFest takes over the Ravensbourne building in London for 2.5 days on October 24-26. Ravensbourne's nine stories become home to a physical representation of the possibilities of the open web: from teaching to music, science to journalism, 1,000 participants dig deep into the content, code, and questions that drive the open web. Rather than slide-driven lectures, MozFest sessions are collaborative, interactive, and focused on uncovering new possibilities for what it means to work online, in the open.

What makes a good journalism or data session?

Journalism drives the web both through content and code, and MozFest sessions reflect that wide range. Data is a part of what helps us understand the world around us, whether that be through visualizations, sensors, or good old fashioned research, MozFest is a place to talk about it. The most important part of a good session is that it is something you are passionate about--whether that be a tool you want to share, a question you want to wrestle with, or a problem you want smart people to help you solve. 
Much like SRCCON, MozFest session leaders play the role of facilitator rather than lecturer. Participants come ready to be generous with their expertise and time and they are oriented toward next steps and building, not just discussing. Session leaders help create that space by using personal experience as a frame for discussion and prototyping, not the sole focus. The team from Aspiration Tech, who help manage MozFest, also have some great guides on break out sessions and facilitating. The audience for MozFest is a little different from SRCCON though--1,000 open web lovers rather than 150 news nerds--which means if there's something you've been wanting to share with a broader audience, MozFest is a great place to do it. Also, there are a limited number of travel stipends available for MozFest, so if you're pitching a session and would require support to attend, please let us know.
Check out some writeups of MozFest from 2013 to get a feel for the event and the types of sessions that have worked well in the past.


The deadline is coming up in a few days, but that still leaves two months to refine your session idea, and OpenNews staff will be available to help talk through session prep. For now, we just want to hear: what do you want to share, build, or discuss?