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Storytelling in a new age

By April 23, 2013 Urban gadfly

It’s part of my morning ritual to wake up with another man.

My husband’s ok with it.

He’s lived with me long enough to understand my needs.

That “other man” is CBC radio host Matt Galloway. He is with me as I brush my teeth and urge the household into daylight. His is the voice that comes on with the alarm. It is not the only way to wake up; I will concede. Music blaring from teenage bedrooms is one potent prod. So too the dog barking when the sports carpool arrives and we’ve all slept through the 4:30 am alarm. I’ve had some awesome sunrise mornings on canoe trips or ocean adventures where the natural world offers its own orchestral wake-up call. All worthy yet none offer a balm to the cursing commuter. With Matt in my ear, I am reminded of something beyond my bitching. His is a voice of passion for his city, a voice connecting the dots between disparate communities to remind us we are citizens, not taxpayers.

So I shrug my shoulders when my family beg me to turn it off.  I know they’re just pretending not to listen.

This morning, Galloway told listeners that newspapers aren’t really dying but doing incredible shape-shifting transformations, and pointed to a new kind of interactive storytelling today from the New York Times.  The Times have released an image taken from the NBC broadcast of the Boston Marathon and provided audio link stories of several runners and spectators.  It takes little time to listen to this collection of stories, about the same time it might take you to browse headlines on your coffee break at work. As you do, you are reminded that, in all the fact-finding reportage that follows tragedies like last week’s bombings, the human element is often missing.

The best kind of journalism is the journey taken days, weeks, and months after these horrific chapters, to visit and learn how these events affected individuals and their communities. Often, what is revealed are heartbreaking tales, fringed with hope and compassion.

In darkness, we grasp for one another.

Check the site out.  Don’t thank me-I heard it from my boyfriend. You can find this new interactive story here.

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