E-Net News

Elon University student team provides exclusive coverage of major telecommunications policy event

The documentary journalism project is part of the activities of the School of Communications' Imagining the Internet Center.

A team of 19 School of Communications students led by four faculty and staff provided the only full-day coverage of the 13-event Internet Governance Forum-USA at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C, July 24.

A journalism team including Elon University students, faculty and staff covered the Internet Governance Forum-USA in Washington, D.C., for the School of Communications’ Imagining the Internet Center.

This project is part of the work of Elon University’s Imagining the Internet Center, which explores and provides insights into emerging innovations, global development, diffusion and governance of networked communications.

The day of high-level discussions tied to the future of communications policy and the Internet’s social, political and economic impact featured keynotes by Vint Cerf, Internet protocol co-inventor, Internet Hall of Fame member and Google vice president; Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist and Internet Hall of Fame member; and Maureen Ohlhausen of the Federal Trade Commission. Among the other speakers and moderators were Robert Pepper, head of global connectivity policy and planning for Facebook, Glenn Deen of Comcast/NBC/Universal, Dana Priest, Pulitzer-winning reporter for The Washington Post, Daniel Castro of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, Amie Stepanovich of Access Now, Ambassador Karen Kornbluh of the Council on Foreign Relations, Nilmini Rubin of TetraTech and Sally Shipman Wentworth, vice president of global policy for the Internet Society.

Reporting by the student team from Elon was published minute-by-minute throughout the day on the Imagining the Internet website, Twitter and Flickr and will become part of the ongoing documentation of the evolution of communications by Imagining the Internet. Find the team's coverage online via these sources:

Jamie Snover ’20 documents the opening plenary during IGF-USA in Washington, D.C., on July 24, 2017.

​​Events examined topics including “Nationalism, Disinformation and Free Expression in the Age of the Internet,” “Promoting a More-Inclusive Internet,” “Healing Internet Fragmentation,” “Taking a Holistic Approach to the Internet of Things,” “National Network Regulations Versus the Global Cloud,” Privacy Regulation in the U.S.” and “Where Are the Digital Dividends We Were Promised?”

Professor Janna Anderson planned and led the project, recruited and trained the students. The on-site reporting team was led by Colin Donohue, director of student media, and Bryan Baker, director of multimedia projects, who supervised the students’ written and visual reporting. They were assisted by Tommy Kopetskie, communications manager. The student team included: Camille Behnke, Liam Collins, Diego Pineda Davila, Maya Eaglin, Christina Elias, Meagan Gitelman, Alex Hager, Deirdre Kronschnabel, Jared Mayerson, Emmanuel Morgan, Grace Morris, Jackie Pascale, Mariah Posey, Alexandra Roat, Ginna Royalty, Alexandra Schonfeld, Jamie Snover, Erik Webb and Brooke Wivagg.

Elon students Maya Eaglin ’19 and Alex Hager ’19 deliver remarks at the “Closing Plenary: Read Out of Key Session Takeaways” session at IGF-USA in Washington, D.C. Also pictured is Dan Caprio (left), co-founder and executive chairman of the Providence Group.

​IGF-USA is an annual gathering of members of civil society, business, government, academia and the technology sector who meet to discuss key issues, share concerns and best practices and cultivate constructive relationships that can lead to a better future. Discussions there are carried over to the Global Internet Governance Forum, where people come together to share hopes and concerns and work toward global Internet connectivity.

This is the sixth IGF-USA event at which Elon has led documentary coverage. Over the years, more than 100 Elon undergraduates have participated in conducting this important historic documentation of these vital policy events that no professional journalism organizations cover. 

The Elon team’s print news reports, video coverage and photos will become part of the official documentation of IGF-USA, playing an important role in the development of its annual report to the United Nations Secretariat for the Global Internet Governance Forum. 

Tommy Kopetskie,
7/25/2017 7:50 AM