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Interview With David Cohn, BrooWaha's New Chief-Editor,

by Ariel (editor), Venice, CA, January 06, 2008

Credit: .
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Who are you?
My name is David Cohn, but I often go by the alias Digidave. I often joke that I am a jack of all trades and a master of none. I grew up in Los Angeles and did my u

Who are you?
My name is David Cohn, but I often go by the alias Digidave. I often joke that I am a jack of all trades and a master of none. I grew up in Los Angeles and did my undergrad at UC Berkeley. After living in SF for a bit and working at Wired magazine, I moved to New York to continue perusing journalism and to work towards my masters degree at Columbia's J-school. And now I'm back in the bay area. I'm lucky in that I've found a way to work on projects, like Broowaha, that I love. I try to be as much of an open book as possible on my blog.

How did you hear about BrooWaha?
I first heard about Broowaha while working at NewAssignment.Net, a project to spur innovation in journalism - particularly through citizen journalism. I have been following all the major citizen journalism networks in the US and a few abroad. I was working with Jeff Jarvis to organize a conference on networked journalism and I wanted to make sure that Ariel from Broowaha was there. It was at that conference that Ariel and I met, albeit briefly, and began to talk about working together on Broowaha.

What do you think is the untapped potential of Broowaha?
The real power of Broowaha is that the writers are also people living their daily lives. Organized newsrooms are great, but they can only cover so much and they do it from a bird's eye view. We don't need to act like profesional journalists reporting on the news. We don't need to "report" the news at all. Let's just tell our stories. We write from the ground level. If there is a storm in my neighborhood I don't want to hear what the local news station says about it, I want to know from my friends and neighbors what is going on. Have any trees been knocked over, power outages, car crashes. When we experience something newsworthy we should share it.

Since Broowaha has networks in some of the biggest cities in the world, we could be a resource to people who want to find information about those cities. We can write about simple things like cafes, restaurants and local bands and if we dig our feet in, we could write about development in Brooklyn, education woes in Atlanta, traffic in Los Angeles, homelessness in San Francisco, new businesses in Miami, etc. It's all about what we experience in our daily lives. Everyone is an expert on something and every day has a story in it somewhere.

What can we expect from you in the next few months?
First, I won't blow up the site.
In addition to not blowing up the site, I hope we can push it forward.
I want to introduce new features like a monthly interview with a Broowaha writer (similar to this interview).
I want to increase the level of social networking on Broowaha, so individual Broowaha writers can work on stories that they love, but they can work on these in teams, meeting new people along the way.
I will do what I can to increase the exposure of Broowaha, but in the end that will come down to the content that we create together. In that respects, you can expect me to do what I can to make your stories better. I won't be re-writing stories (I know how annoying that can be), but I might give friendly advice or sneak a quick copy edit in here and there. My only goal is to add value to Broowaha.

I want to help define Broowaha (Read our new About section). That doesn't mean I'm here to dictate it - but to help the community find itself. It's about creating positive forms of communication.


Any advice for our citizen reporters?
Write about what you love. The great thing about being a citizen reporter is that it is a hobby not a 9-5 job. That actually gives you an advantage. Think about what you are already an expert in, what you are already passionate about and follow it. I'm also available if you have any questions: david@broowaha.com. I will try to make myself available - hell, I love talking about this stuff anyways.

David Cohn is known as Digidave in BrooWaha and is a member of the SF edition. Please join me in welcoming him to the Broo' and feel free to ask any questions you may have for him in the comment section.



About the Writer

Ariel is an editor for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
Want to write articles too? Sign up & become a writer!

11 comments on Interview With David Cohn, BrooWaha's New Chief-Editor,

Log In To Vote   Score: 6
By Steven Lane on January 06, 2008 at 10:49 pm

Official welcome David, and please free to edit anything I write, I hate looking at one of my mistakes AFTER it's too late.

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Log In To Vote   Score: 6
By rjlight on January 06, 2008 at 11:23 pm

Congratulations Dave! I hope you enjoy this! I've been MIA lately, but when I do write again -- feel free to edit away--well, sorta...

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Log In To Vote   Score: 5
By Sharlene Hardin on January 07, 2008 at 01:23 am

Congrats Dave.  I wish you all the best.  OH and thanks again for the encouragement you gave me on my articles, I really appreciated it.   

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Log In To Vote   Score: 5
By Digidave on January 07, 2008 at 04:47 am

Thanks for all the kind words everybody. You guys rock!

I look forward to seeing what everybody here produce and doing what I can to make Broowaha a better place. I really do want to stay as open as possible - you should always feel free to message me.

Ariel and I have already got a new cool idea for Broowaha which we hope to launch in the next week or two, so keep  your eyes open.

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Log In To Vote   Score: 5
By Lady D on January 07, 2008 at 01:05 pm

I am new here. I have read and enjoyed your work. Good to be working with you.  

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Log In To Vote   Score: 5
By Kerry on January 07, 2008 at 05:16 pm

I'm also new to the writing of Broo articles.  I look forward to working with Dave and meeting the authors and readers.

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Log In To Vote   Score: 4
By Jen on January 07, 2008 at 05:25 pm

Glad to hear Ariel has some help!  Doubt I'll have a chance to write for awhile, but I welcome the editing as...like everyone else I hate finding mistakes AFTER I hit send :)

Welcome to the broo crew!

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Log In To Vote   Score: 3
By Steven Blake on January 07, 2008 at 06:37 pm

Congrats Dave! If you need any help give me a shout. Okay editing is not my area. In fact I should also take this chance to thank Ariel for the spell check cause I suck. But anything else you need give me a shout.

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Log In To Vote   Score: 3
By Ron on January 07, 2008 at 08:42 pm

Welcome aboard Dave!

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Log In To Vote   Score: 3
By 'Mean' Mike Duffau on January 08, 2008 at 03:46 am

hey dave!!!...congratulations! you keep punchin'

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Log In To Vote   Score: 2
By Josh Marks on January 09, 2008 at 06:57 pm

Congrats on the new position David! BrooWaha is really taking off. It is exciting to watch this site evolve. Thanks Ariel for giving so many writers a place to get published.

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