By Jock Lauterer
Lecturer and advisor
The Carrboro Commons.
Welcome to the Fall 2007 edition of the Carrboro Commons, a student-produced biweekly online source of stories, photos and commentary about this wonderfully eclectic community of ours.
I say “ours” because as a Chapel Hill native and now a resident of Greater Carrboro, I take pride in being a Carrburban — or whatever it is that we call ourselves.
The Commons was created a year ago last fall, largely due to student initiative, plus the inspiration and encouragement of area journalists Robert “Bubba” Dickson and Kirk Ross, who launched their own independent community newspaper, the Citizen, in Carrboro last March. Not surprisingly, the Commons has a reciprocal relationship with the Citizen, and you will see an occasional Commons feature appearing in print in the Citizen.
As you read our stories and look at our pictures, remember this is a “lab e-newspaper,” with the dual purpose of informing Carrboro residents while providing journalism students with real-life, real-time experience under the full glare of public opinion. Instead of talking about community journalism, we’re doing community journalism. Such project-based learning is not without its risks though.
There will be, and have been mistakes. But be sure, when we make a fumble, we will acknowledge it immediately and publicly in the spirit of transparency. I look upon such stumbles as teachable moments and learning experiences.
That being said, enjoy the Commons, and give us your feedback and comments as you see fit. To register, go to carrborocommons.org and find the link to register beneath the spreading green tree logo.
Jock Lauterer teaches community journalism at the University of North Carolina School of Journalism and Mass Communication where he can be reached at 962-6421 or firstname.lastname@example.org The Carrboro Commons is a project of the JOMC 459 Community Journalism class.