The Media is an essential component to getting your message out to the public. Your event is note-worthy, don't be shy away from contacting media. In particular, it will be much easier and often more effective to start local to get your message out: don't underestimate the importance of school and local newspapers. Most media outlets have a designated "Education Reporter," they are the best person to contact when trying to get coverage. School newspapers want stories: contact them to cover your event or to provide publicity beforehand. This is a sure fire way to reach students, take advantage of your resources.
Here are a few suggested links to media toolkits. These websites and toolkits are not necessarily specific to the Apartheid Wall or Palestine, but they are great resources. These sites provide necessary information to contact the media, hold a media worthy event, write a press release, give an interview and hold a press conference. Check them out! Palestine Media Watch www.pmwatch.org
PMWATCH was established in October of 2000 to promote fair and accurate coverage of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in the US mainstream media. They provide "How-To's" on contacting and writing to the media, as well as providing techniques for media analysis.
Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting www.fair.org/activism/
FAIR is a national media watch group, offering well-documented criticism of media bias and censorship since 1986. They work to invigorate the First Amendment by advocating for greater diversity in the press and by scrutinizing media practices that marginalize public interest, minority and dissenting viewpoints. Their activism link provides a comprehensive list of contacts in every sector of national media including cable, broadcast, magazine and newspapers. FAIR also can help individuals and groups demand more even handed coverage of their local and national media.
Foreign Policy In Focus http://www.foreignpolicy-infocus.org/media/training.html
Foreign Policy in Focus seeks to make the U.S. a more responsible global leader and global partner. It is a "think tank without walls" that functions as an international network of more than 650 policy analysts and advocates. Unlike traditional think tanks, FPIF is committed to advancing a citizen-based foreign policy agenda--one that is fundamentally rooted in citizen initiatives and movements. They have a produced a media CD and booklet advertised as useful to activists, scholars, and journalists. The resource costs $15.00 and the order information is available at the website.
Global Exchange http://www.globalexchange.org/countries/palestine/toolkits.html
Global Exchange is an international human rights organization dedicated to promoting political, social and environmental justice globally. Since 1988, Global Exchange has been working to increase global awareness among the U.S. public while building partnerships around the world. They provide three Palestine related downloadable toolkits. The toolkit entitled "Toolkit for Activism on Palestinian Human Rights" provides some helpful hints for activists and organizers. Included in this toolkit are tips for writing press releases, interview tips and holding media events.
The Ruckus Society http://www.ruckus.org/resources/manuals/media/index.html
The Ruckus Society provides environmental, human rights, and social justice organizers with the tools, training, and support needed to achieve their goals. They work with a range of communities, organizations, and movementsófrom high school students to professional organizationsóRuckus facilitates the sharing of information and expertise that strengthens the capacity to change our relationship with the environment and each other. The Ruckus Societies "Media Manual" informs activists about the inner workings of the media and the best ways to utilize the media. They specifically focus on helping activists to get the word out about Direct Actions and making direct action media worthy.
While it is essential to contact the media, it is also essential to educate ourselves. Below is a list of some alterative media sources. (Adopted from AFSC List of Media Links.)
Ali Abunimah's Bitter Pill: www.abunimah.org/
AIC (Alternative Information Center): www.alternativenews.org/
The Electronic Intifada: electronicintifada.net/new.shtml