The Early Deadline is December 9th! Enter Now!

Enter the 14th Annual Shorty Awards

The Shorty Awards honor the best of social media and digital. See categories below. The early entry deadline is on December 9th, 2021.

From the 7th Annual Shorty Awards

#FergusonNext

Entered in Social Good Campaign

About this entry

#FergusonNext combines the Guardian's global platform with the on-the-ground expertise of local news organizations to answer an important question – beyond the Michael Brown case, how can we work together to find justice?

The project includes reporting from the Guardian US, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch Editorial Page, Ebony.com, Colorlines, The St. Louis American and The St. Louis Riverfront Times.

When the news broke that there would be no indictment in the Michael Brown case, Matt Sullivan (the Guardian's deputy Head of News) and Tony Messenger (the St. Louis Post-Dispatch's Editorial Page Editor) came up with #FergusonNext, a digital-first, solution-based collaboration between the two organizations and Ebony.com, Colorlines, The St. Louis American and The St. Louis Riverfront Times. The campaign asks readers for ideas to address the conditions between communities and police in Ferguson, and across America.

Users can submit their solutions using the hashtag #FergusonNext on Twitter, Tumblr, or Instagram, or through the microsite . The editors then select reader responses for display on the microsite in a way that is easily shared across Twitter. The website features #FergusonNext-themed coverage, and additionally the website features a link to donate to the Brown Siblings Memorial Fund.


The results? #FergusonNext hashtag was was tweeted thousands of times, and the campaign was featured by Poynter.com and the Columbia Journalism Review. The Guardian's opinion pieces that were part of #FergusonNext received 10k+ shares and $4.5K has been donated to the Brown Siblings Memorial Fund (which is promoted on the #FergusonNext microsite).

Why does this entry deserve to win?

When the news broke that there would be no indictment in the Michael Brown case, Matt Sullivan and Tony Messenger knew that they needed to come up with a campaign that did more than just raising awareness – they needed to build a campaign that would focus on finding a solution.

The transformation underway in Ferguson was just the beginning, and the conversation should not stop there. #FergusonNext deserves to win because it is a commitment to continue the conversation on community/police relations in America, bring it to a wide audience, and uncover a solution. With this campaign, six news organizations, with a massive combined reach on social media, are committing to and investing in reporting on issues that their audience cares deeply about. This also means that awareness of these issues are being brought to people on the ground, across the globe.

Below are the facets of the campaign:

Coverage

The Guardian, along with The St. Louis Post-Dispatch Editorial Page, Ebony.com, Colorlines, The St. Louis American and The St. Louis Riverfront Times, are providing #FergusonNext-themed columns. To-date, over 30 long-form articles have been created in just over 2 months. The #FergusonNext hashtag makes these stories even more discoverable through a centralized location across social channels. Additionally, all of these articles are accessible through the microsite.

Microsite & Submissions

The Guardian is providing IT infrastructure for the project using its Swarmize data-journalism platform. This microsite allows anyone with an internet connection to submit solutions directly through the site. People can also submit by using the hashtag #FergusonNext. Aside from these submissions posing potential solutions, they provide people on the ground a voice through a direct line of contact to editors from the 6 news organizations.

Tweetable Responses

Each submission is reviewed by the editors of #FergusonNext, and then selected to be featured on the website. The featured responses are easily shareable (one click to tweet), with their own unique image, providing increased engagement and reach.

The results

The #FergusonNext campaign received a fantastic response. The hashtag was was tweeted thousands of times, and the campaign was featured in Poynter.com, NeimanLab, and the Columbia Journalism Review. The Guardian's opinion pieces that were part of #FergusonNext received 10k+ shares and $4.5K has been donated to the Brown Siblings Memorial Fund (which is promoted on the #FergusonNext microsite).

#FergusonNext is an ongoing campaign which reaches global audiences, while harnessing the power of local reporting.

Media

Entrant Company / Organization Name

The Guardian US and The St. Louis Post-Dispatch Editorial Page

Links