Reporting on my home state

So I went to school in D.C. and got an internship at a national news outlet, PBS MediaShift.

And I ended up covering the state of media in my home state.


Just kidding, I had a great time. I met some of the leaders of media in New Jersey and New York at a conference titled, “New Jersey: A Laboratory for Media Innovation.” Some of those media leaders, such a Jeff Jarvis (whom coincidentally I had been avidly following on Twitter for months before I knew this conference existed), Debbie Galant and Amy Mitchell joined journalists from across the state for an in-depth and frank discussion on the role of journalism this new media ecosystem.

Probably the strangest part of the whole experience was, well, not feeling like an intern. My name tag simply read:

Zach Cohen

PBS MediaShift

When I introduced myself as being from PBS, attendees seemed impressed. It then surprised them when I would say that I was an intern. But I represented the media outlet with arguably more reach as a national brand than most of the newsrooms there.

But I didn’t feel better than any of these other journalists.. I was so inspired by the amount of passion and talent these journalists had. I felt more like joining the conversation than reporting on it after a while, and I credit the speakers and attendees for creating such an engaging and enriching experience.

Check out the full story I wrote after the fact (pro-tip: take LOTS of good notes at a conference, and don’t rely on your recorder. Much easier to peruse written notes than a recording), as well as my live-tweeting the conference.