Flak Jacket: An educational videogame for journalists on dangerous assignments. The goal is to build a “first-person shooter” videogame (camera shooting, not guns) designed to teach journalists how to survive when on dangerous assignments.
Please take a look and if you like it, post a comment or give it a “like.”
Kudos to Daniel Schaefer, Communications Ph.D. candidate at the University of Colorado Boulder and technology coordinator for the CU Journalism & Mass Communication program, and Test Kitchen partner, for taking the lead on this proposal, which we hope will find funding whether it gets through the KNC competition or not. (As Knight Foundation director of Journalism and Media Innovation John Bracken noted today, the chance of any entry getting funded in this News Challenge is .05% — which is far worse odds than applying and being accepted into Harvard for new freshmen!)
Daniel has enlisted an interdisciplinary team of smart people from around our campus. One is assistant professor of Journalism Hun Shik Kim, a former war correspondent who has covered conflicts in Sri Lanka, Kashmir, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Hun Shik’s research includes 47 in-depth interview transcripts with American, British, and Iraqi war correspondents as well as empirical data on 309 American, British, Australian, Canadian, Korean, and Egyptian journalists covering a variety of international wars and conflicts. Incorporating this knowledge and research (and more) into a video game for teaching journalists how to stay safe on dangerous reporting assignments should be incredibly valuable.
It’s worth noting, too, that wars are not the only dangerous assignments for journalists. We aim to educate journalists on covering riots, protests, and police raids, as well.