Thank you for taking an interest in the MTV Choose or Lose project. I was, indeed, born in Knoxville but grew up in a suburb of Nashville from age 7. ...Best of luck to you, Dustin Ogdin, and we'll be following your efforts.
I checked out your blog and see you work at the Sentinel. The Sentinel has a special place in my heart. My grandfather, Seaton Warters, who just passed away this fall was a printer for the Sentinel for over 30 years. He started in the late 40's or early 50's working with lead type-setting and was there long enough to see the process move into the digital age. I was lucky enough to film some interviews with him this summer and he talked a good deal about his years at the paper.
You asked what I hope to accomplish with the MTV Street team. My goal is to cover the issues that matter to young Tennesseans, especially young people of voting age. I am particularly interested in covering those issues that are currently not receiving much attention within the '08 Election Coverage. As a result, the first thing on my agenda is to hit the streets and hit message boards and ask young people what's on their mind and what matters to them. I hope to be a conduit for their interests, because that's the purpose of this project - generating youth participation in the electoral and political process.
My larger hope is that this project as whole, including the work being done in all 50 states, can play some small part in encouraging young people to vote and become involved in electoral politics and political issues in general. We've already seen the affect that YouTube, MySpace, Facebook, and other other citizen-based media have had on electioneering and election coverage, and this media is very much in its infancy. Certainly in my lifetime, never has the media been more democratized than it is today thanks to digital technology. I appreciate that MTV and the Knight Foundation have recognized that potential, and I'm excited to find out what we can do together during the next eleven months. It's an experiment for everyone involved.
(Photo from spoke digital films)