Mon August 13, 2012
Office Olympics: KUOW Staff Battle for Waste-basketball Gold
If you're already feeling nostalgic for the London Olympics, don't miss Seattle station KUOW's fun spin on the global event from last week. RadioActive, a KUOW program that trains teens to create radio, recently held the station's first-ever "office Olympics." The event is an example of producing digital content with personality, a diversity of voices and for the eye as well as the ear.
There was "heated competition" amongst staff and the RadioActive crew in three events: waste–basketball, envelope stuffing and name that tune. Rather than wait for the audio to be posted, the group shared an album of behind-the-scenes photos on their Facebook page.
RA students Sarah Rosenthal and Ellie Garcia came up with the idea, planned and executed it for a podcast, Jenny Asarnow, the program’s producer and manager, wrote in an email. "Our students are great at building community and team spirit," Asarnow said. "I think we have to have KUOW office games every year."
Jim Gates, KUOW senior editor, won the gold for his waste-basketball skills. Other than the inspired use of trash cans, the students involved in RA have brought the newsroom stories the staff wouldn't have known about, Gates wrote in an email.
"I think working with the students has made me a better communicator and a better editor," Gates said. "Plus they’re just fun to work with and their enthusiasm for creating radio is infectious."
Asarnow shared that there's much more where the Olympiad idea came from. Students are currently working on stories about a 15-year-old going through medical procedures to become male, an undocumented high school graduate who can’t afford to go to college because he can’t get a loan, and a mother who became homeless because of paying her daughter’s college tuition.