Oregon Public Broadcasting: Setting up a PIN story booth

Amanda Peacher
Public Insight Journalist
Oregon Public Broadcasting

Oregon Public Broadcasting experimented with setting up a “story booth” at an annual daylong TEDx event in Portland. During three 45-minute breaks, we invited conference-goers to tell a one- to three-minute story in response to one of 3 questions:

1. What social or environmental change are you working on in your daily life?

2. What inspires you toward your own personal mission?

3. Tell us a story about your most formative or life changing event.

Storyteller Jessica Hinds. <a href=" http://opb.is/storybooth" target="_blank"><strong>Listen to her story</strong></a>. (Photo shared by Amanda Peacher | OPB)

Storyteller Jessica Hinds. Listen to her story. (Photo shared by Amanda Peacher | OPB)

We set up four iPads connected to iRigs in small, quiet rooms. People signed up and then recorded and uploaded their own stories to the OPB Storybooth SoundCloud account (using the attached instructions). When the storytellers were finished recording, we snapped their photos with a laptop camera and added it to their SoundCloud files on the spot. Everyone who participated also signed up for OPB’s Public Insight Network. Forty-two people participated. There were so many willing storytellers that we were unable to accommodate everyone.

Volunteer Ryan Voelker helps a storyteller take his photo and sign up for OPB's Public Insight Network. (Photo shared by Amanda Peacher | OPB)

Volunteer Ryan Voelker helps a storyteller take his photo and sign up for OPB’s Public Insight Network. (Photo shared by Amanda Peacher | OPB)

Two volunteers explained the process as people approached the booth and helped storytellers with any technical problems, and two OPB staffers helped with photos and PIN sign-up. We also invited storytellers who were also Twitter users to share their handles with us so we could tweet photos and a thank-you for sharing their stories.

We see this as a way to be visible in our community and to give people a sense of what it means to be part of the Public Insight Network. (Have a story? Share it. Right here!) We also see it as a way for our newsroom to discover new stories in our community and build an immediate relationship with new sources.

Questions? Contact me at apeacher@opb.org.

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Amanda Peacher Public Insight Journalist
Oregon Public Broadcasting
Amanda coordinates OPB's Public Insight Network, a community of sources who share personal experiences with the newsroom. She also produces radio and web stories, data visualizations, and facilitates community engagement opportunities for the newsroom. Before coming to OPB she was a teaching fellow at the University of Oregon, where she was also the managing editor of Ecotone. Amanda hails from Idaho, where she worked as a freelance journalist for outlets like High Country News and The Boise Weekly, as a wilderness ranger, and as an outreach specialist for a statewide nonprofit.

Amanda has masters degrees in literary nonfiction journalism and environmental studies from the UO. She’s a fellow with the Institute for Journalism and Natural Resources and has reported in Mexico as a Savage International Peace Fellow. She enjoys cycling, playing cello, and baking sweets.