This just in: NPR checks in with our research director

Our director of research Dr. Jessica Beard discusses harmful gun violence reporting on Consider This. (Jump to 4:05 for Dr. Beard or listen to the whole report.)

Meeting with journalists

From left: Maxayn Gooden, Hanae Mason, Oronde McClain and Yvonne Latty

Two of our staffers and two critical partners participated in a session on preventing harmful gun violence reporting on Saturday, January 28 at the Klein Camp news innovation unconference at Temple University.

Our Credible Messenger Community Manager Maxayn Gooden and Credible Messenger Newsroom Liaison Oronde McClain took part, along with Hanae Mason, who led the “Thriving” storytelling initiative at Technically Philly.

The session was moderated by Yvonne Latty, Temple Journalism Professor and director of the Logan Center for Urban Investigative Reporting.

Gun violence survivors identify harmful media coverage: New study

Above: Our research collaborative met at Temple University last year.

Reliving the trauma. Frustrated with inaccuracies. Feeling dehumanized. These were just some of the harmful effects that gun violence survivors described when asked how they perceived news media reporting about their injuries and about gun violence in their communities.

That’s according to a new study from a collaborative of Philadelphia researchers coordinated by our Director of Research, Dr. Jessica Beard.

“Like I’m a nobody:” firearm-injured peoples’ perspectives on news media reporting about firearm violence was published recently in Social Science and Medicine: Qualitative Research in Health.

“These interviews reveal the need for journalists to stop episodic snapshot reporting of individual incidents of interpersonal firearm violence and concentrate on producing more in-depth reporting that presents root causes and solutions, and gives voice to those who are directly impacted,” said Dr. Beard. “It’s time for reporting on firearm violence to be part of the solution,” she added.

Twenty-six gunshot patients participated in this study. Of these, half were aware of TV, newspaper or social media coverage of their shooting though none had been interviewed by a journalist.

The harmful reporting illuminated by this study demonstrates the need for ethical guidelines and recommendations for best practices specific to covering gun violence.

Press release and contact info: Temple-led study examines the perspectives of recently firearm-injured people on news media reports of firearm violence

New webinar now available

Our team participated in “Changing the Narrative on Gun Violence: The Role of Media,” a new webinar from the Stoneleigh Foundation, where they are now also seeking are seeking applications from organizations interested in hosting an Emerging Leader Fellowship focused on addressing gun violence. WATCH THE VIDEO |MORE INFO

What’s Been Done & What’s To Come

As we begin the new year, it’s appropriate to pause and reflect on all that has been accomplished in 2022. Our work won’t be finished soon but we are proud of victories at The Center and those in the larger ecosystem. READ MORE

New. Needed. Now.

This campaign will profile those working with The Center to advance empathic, ethical, and impactful journalism through research, improved journalistic practices, credible messenger reporting, and solutions-oriented convenings about Philadelphia’s gun violence crisis . Please consider making a gift today.

New. Needed. Now. – Purposeful Partnership with Yvonne Latty

During this campaign, we’ve profiled a gun violence survivora researcher, and a mother who lost her son. But, to improve media coverage of gun violence, we need members of the media at the table as well. READ MORE

New. Needed. Now. – Asking Questions with Dr. Jessica Beard.

One day, when you watch the local news, you might not see those pictures of chalk markings and police tape. You might think back to the time when episodic coverage of violence – rather than a public health approach – was the norm. You might even wonder why things changed. READ MORE

New. Needed. Now. – Endings and Beginnings with Maxayn Gooden

She helps build healing communities. She keeps her son’s legacy alive. And, much of that great work has roots in the days following Jahsun’s death. READ MORE

New. Needed. Now. – Oronde’s Time of Transformation.

Many people already know Oronde McClain’s story. In fact, Cherri Gregg of WHYY is one of the journalists that has shared it. Shortly after being interviewed by Cherri, Oronde returned with a different request. He wanted her help doing some of his own reporting. READ MORE

Better Gun Violence Reporting Workshop

Nearly 60 Philadelphia TV news journalists, community leaders and other experts came together to imagine how we can lead the way in our city to advance the most ethical, empathetic and impactful reporting possible. READ MORE

Healthcare journalism summit

Get to know us

Our director of research Dr. Jessica Beard discussed our work on Trauma Code at WBAI in New York.

Credible Messenger Film Festival, 2022

We weld our first-ever Credible Messenger Film Festival last summer, screened every short documentary we have supported to date, and followed each screening with a panel discussion including some of the community journalists, producers and professional partners behind each production as well as some of the people who appeared. READ MORE

Audio documentary

Tashawn Strother, a community journalist from our Credible Messenger Reporting Project, hosts an audio documentary sharing her family’s journey after her son Walter Willis was shot and critically wounded on New Year’s Eve in 2019. Voices include our Director of Research Dr. Jessica Beard, who is also the trauma surgeon who cared for Walter – and Walter himself. LISTEN: BEHIND THE SCENES INTERVIEWS

Our Director of Research Dr. Jessica Beard participated in this media panel addressing the role and responsibilities of the media. Click to play now, read about the event at Billy Penn and feel free to embed this video from YouTube.

Better Gun Violence Reporting Summit

We organized the inaugural Better Gun Violence Reporting Summit at WHYY in Philadelphia shortly in late 2019. Nearly 250 people attended from around the city and across the nation. VIEW THE INTERACTIVE AGENDA

Community Conversations Day

In advance of the Summit, we invited 15 Philadelphia journalists who play some role covering gun violence to spend a day with 30 residents from core communities impacted by the problem in the city. READ MORE

Honored

The Center has been recognized as “Nontraditional News Provider of the Year” in the 2023 Philly News Awards from the Pen and Pencil Club, Philadelphia’s press club. We accept this honor on behalf of the dozens of gun violence survivors, co-victims and others who have participated in our Credible Messenger Reporting Project.

Weekly Brief: 01.25.23

by The Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting in News

Each week we share news from our Center plus updates on gun violence and prevention from our partners at Billy Penn.


This week: Wish us luck at the Philly News Awards tomorrow night. Join us at the “journalism unconference” Saturday at Temple.

Read More

Our programs

The Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting was launched to explore the hypotheses that changing the way some journalists and news organizations cover gun violence can prevent shootings and save lives. Since then, our research collaborative has refined this focus by identifying harmful reporting practices, asking what best practices would look like and how they could be implemented. Now, we have organized our work into three closely-aligned programs:

CREDIBLE MESSENGER REPORTING: Our community reporting project empowers people impacted by gun violence to report on root causes, lived experience and possible solutions from the community perspective. Credible Messengers are paired with advanced professional journalists to learn from each other and leverage their combined authority to produce and distribute independent news reports. READ MORE

RESEARCH AT THE CENTER: We facilitate an interdisciplinary research collaborative that is exploring the intersection of gun violence, impacted communities and the media. Our Director or Research Dr. Jessica Beard presented our work last spring at the SAVIR conference in Washington. Dr. Jennifer Midberry presented at ICA in Paris. READ MORE

BETTER GUN VIOLENCE REPORTING: What does the most ethical, impactful and empathetic reporting look like when covering community gun violence? We collaborate with journalists, community representatives and other experts to advance reporting practices. READ MORE

Directory

• About the Center
• Who we are
• Better Gun Violence Reporting
• Credible Messenger Reporting Project
• Research at the Center
• Trauma & Care
• Data Catalog
• Philadelphia Data
• Media Mentions
• Free Weekly Brief
• Support the Center
• Search this site
• Send us a Message

Resources
• Have you been affected?
• Need help now?
• In memoriam

Funders
• The Stoneleigh Foundation
• Independence Public Media Foundation
• Spring Point Partners
• Knight-Lenfest Local News Transformation Fund
• The Lenfest Institute for Journalism
• The Alfred and Mary Douty Foundation
• Reynolds Journalism Institute at the University of Missouri
• Philadelphia Office of Violence Prevention
• The Barra Foundation Directors Grant Program

In-kind contributors
• WHYY
• Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists
• Reynolds Journalism Institute at the University of Missouri
• Mothers in Charge
• AH Datalytics
• Action Tank
• The Scattergood Foundation
• Resolve Philly
• Fels Lab at the University of Pennsylvania

Community Partners
• Mothers in Charge
• Zero Homicides Now
• Need in Deed

Media Partners
• WHYY & Billy Penn
• The Trace & Up the Block
• Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists
• Logan Center for Urban Investigative Reporting
• Love Now Media
• Kouvenda Media
• Seeking Solutions: Gun Violence in Missouri
• Philadelphia Obituary Project
• Resolve Philly, Broke in Philly, The Toll and the Germantown Info Hub
• WURD Radio
• Columbia Journalism Review
• The Student Vanguard at Community College of Philadelphia
• Revive Radio

Summit partner institutions
• Reynolds Journalism Institute, University of Missouri
• Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma as Columbia University
• WHYY
• The Lenfest Institute for Journalism
• The Trace
• The Guardian: Guns and Lies
• Coalition of Trauma Centers for Firearm Injury Prevention
• Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Violence Solutions
• Guns & America, WAMU
• Mothers in Charge

Credible Messenger Reports
• They Don’t Care About Us – or Do They?
• Stronger Every Day: Healing After Gun Violence
• These Philly Gun Violence Activists Are Not Giving Up On Saving Lives
• Humanity behind the headlines: Black men on surviving in Philly
• Never Ending Emotions
• The Lasting Impact: The emotional scars that gun violence leaves behind
• The Path Forward
• Numb to Normalcy: Gun Violence in America
• Voices Beyond the Gunfire

Participate
• Apply to become a Credible Messenger community journalist
• Apply to become a professional reporting partner
• Request to invite Professional Reporting Partner
• Resources for Credible Messenger Reporting Teams
• Credible Messenger Project Proposal Form
• Frequently asked questions

Local data
• Philadelphia Shooting Victims Dashboard
• Philadelphia Shooting Victims: Past 48 months
• Philadelphia and Pennsylvania open data and related resources

Healing through storytelling

Before joining our staff, Oronde McClain produced a report for our Credible Messenger Reporting Project. Then, he wrote about his experience for The Philadelphia Inquirer, titled: I was shot in the head as a child. It took 20 years, and other survivors, to heal

Progress Report

Take a look at us now, in this new report from Billy Penn: Can journalism that centers community help stop shootings? PCGVR is betting on it

Changing the way we talk about gun violence

Dr. Jennifer Midberry of Lehigh University reports on what’s happening in our research collaborative for the Temple University Faculty Herald. READ MORE

Media mentions

01.29.23: Changing the Way Media Reports on Gun Violence [Consider This on NPR]  (Segment begins at 4:05.)

01.17.23: A new gun violence narrative [The Philadelphia Citizen]

01.10.23: ‘Like I’m a nobody’: Breaking news coverage of shootings is dehumanizing and delays progress, per new Temple study [Billy Penn]

01.09.23: Evening WURDS: interview with our Director of Research Dr. Jessica Beard [WURD Radio via Facebook] (Segment begins at 27:45.)

01.05.23: Save Our Streets: A Year of Hope [FOX 29] (Segment begins at 16:14.)

12.15.22: Credible Messenger Reporting Project uses art to shed light on gun violence in Philadelphia [FOX 29]

12.11.22: Addressing Philadelphia’s Gun Violence Epidemic [The Stoneleigh Foundation via YouTube]

12.07.22: Understanding American Gun Violence Part 2: How to solve the American gun epidemic [Temple Now]

12.07.22: Understanding American Gun Violence Part 1: The evolution of America’s relationship with firearms [Temple Now]

11.30.22: Gun Violence Reporting with Dr. Jessica Beard [Trauma Code]

11.28.22: Can journalism that centers community help stop shootings? PCGVR is betting on it [Billy Penn]

11.09.22: More meaningful coverage of firearm violence requires ‘radical empathy [Association of Health Care Journalists]

11.09.22: BAND-AID on a Bullet Wound [SoundCloud]

10.31.22: Fall summit speaker Jessica Beard targets more empathetic, ethical coverage of gun violence [Association of Health Care Journalists]

10.17.22: Changing the Way We Talk About Gun Violence [Temple University Faculty Herald]

10.05.22: How local news can help heal Philly’s gun violence crisis without harming communities [Billy Penn]

08.17.22: I was shot in the head as a child. It took 20 years, and other survivors, to heal [The Philadelphia Inquirer]


Alert: Due to the instability at Twitter, we are now posting to Mastodon as well. Follow us at: mstdn.social/@PCGVR


Lifelines

If you or someone you know is suicidal, in crisis, or in need of general mental health support, please know help is available. You can contact your physician, local hospital emergency room, or any of the hotlines, text lines, web chats, and support groups listed below. Most are free and confidential resources. Many are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 988
Crisis Text Line: 741741
• Lifeline Chat web chat service
Samaritans’ Helpline: (877) 870-4673 (available in 240+ languages)


Journalists: Take this online course on Responsible Reporting on Suicide. (You can audit for free or pay to get certified.)

Organization

The Philadelphia Center Gun Violence Reporting is the primary project of The Initiative for Better Gun Violence Reporting. The Initiative is co-managed with fiscal sponsorship by CultureTrust Greater Philadelphia and is a member of CultureWorks Greater Philadelphia.

Newsletter

Each Wednesday morning we share news, research, data, opinions and community responses related to gun violence and prevention in Philadelphia. You can subscribe for free.

Licensing

Except where otherwise noted, this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. Some embedded content, web site design logos and photographs may not be covered.