5 years of environmental journalism in Indonesia
May26

5 years of environmental journalism in Indonesia

Last week Mongabay-Indonesia—our Indonesian-language environmental news service—celebrated its fifth anniversary with an event held at @America in Jakarta. The following traces Mongabay-Indonesia’s evolution from a concept to a popular web site whose influence extends well beyond Indonesia. Five and a half years ago, Mongabay was a two-person organization. While our site was well-respected and widely-read in the conservation community, we had big ideas that could never be realized under our advertising-based business model of the time. One of those ideas was to build an Indonesian environmental news service. Why Indonesia? Firstly, it has a huge amount of biodiversity living among its many ecosystems ranging from coral reefs to rainforests, much is which is threatened by unsustainable harvesting and habitat conversion, degradation, and destruction. It also has a huge human population which lacked reliable access to environmental news. In the early 2010s, Indonesia looked to be at a potential inflection point where it could shift from a deforestation-driven development model that laid waste to its biological and cultural diversity to something greener, perhaps following the path pioneered by Brazil, which had recently curbed deforestation in the Amazon while still expanding agricultural output. There was high-level political support from then president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, a billion dollar commitment from Norway to fund efforts to reduce deforestation, and new pledges from several companies to reduce or eliminate deforestation from their palm oil supply chains. Given that one of the major obstacles to progress in Indonesia was corruption in the natural resources sector, an environmental news service that increased transparency and accountability around forests might actually make a significant contribution toward shifting business-as-usual practices. Environmental journalism seemed to offer the potential to help create an enabling environment for others—advocacy groups, researchers, progressive companies, communities, and the bureaucracies—working on forests and related issues in Indonesia. So with the intent of building such a service, in 2012 I formed a non-profit: Mongabay.org. Its first project was Mongabay-Indonesia: an Indonesian-language environmental news service, for Indonesians and by Indonesians. After securing our first organizational grant, I posted three job descriptions in English and Indonesian. The response was overwhelming: more than 200 applications came in just three weeks. Two weeks later, we hired the team, which was led by Ridzki Sigit, our program manager. I really didn’t know what to expect. I didn’t speak in Indonesian and most of my time in the country had been spent in remote forests, not cities. But I put my faith in my small team and was rewarded with remarkable success. Within three months of hiring the team, Mongabay-Indonesia was arguably the most popular web site dedicated to environmental issues in Indonesia....

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Mongabay Job Opportunity – Video Manager
May19

Mongabay Job Opportunity – Video Manager

Mongabay’s Video Manager will lead our efforts to build out our conservation video program, including producing our own video content and serving as a liaison to production partners. This individual’s duties will include: – working with staff editors to determine what pieces get turned into video; – managing video submissions from field correspondents and editing these into videos for social media; – leading the development of any “live” content that might be streamed from staff or correspondents; – developing and maintaining our YouTube channel as well as posting to our other social media channels; – working with editors to post video content in Mongabay news articles; – analyzing collected viewership data across various platforms; and – serving as a liaison to video production partners who may develop some short-form pieces into longer, higher-production value videos and films SKILLS At the heart of Mongabay is a spirit of innovation. We’re open to trying new ideas, adapting existing models, and phasing out underperforming projects in our quest to deliver the best products and services possible given our resources. Due to our culture and global at-home staff, the most successful employees at Mongabay are adept at working independently, and produce consistent high-quality work by taking initiative and thinking creatively about solutions to problems. Some skills that are required in this position are: – Video production and editing experience, especially with short-form content – Advanced understanding of post production, workflow and production management – Film/camera handling experience a plus, but not required – On screen experience not required – Understanding of the video, documentary, and film sectors, including distribution – Social media expertise, including social marketing – Ability to make timely decisions and demonstrate good judgment – Exceptional written and verbal communication skills – English as a first language (or exceptional fluency in both writing and speaking) – Providing other support as needed to ensure content meets Mongabay’s high standards of professionalism, consistency, authenticity, and reliability – Extremely self-directed and motivated – Strong sense of professionalism and reliability – Ability to adjust approaches according to feedback – Contributes to the team effort by following through on tasks and delivering results DESIRED EXPERIENCE & REQUIREMENTS – Prior experience – one to four years of video production and editing experience – Technical experience – Microsoft Office, WordPress (or similar), Google Drive, Adobe premiere, Adobe After Effects, FCPX, Avid Media Composer, YouTube, Social Media – Location – Mongabay does not have a physical office, but due to the need to serve as a liaison to video partners, we have a very strong preference for candidates based in the New York City and Greater Los Angeles areas....

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New reporting opportunity: Amazon Infrastructure
May03

New reporting opportunity: Amazon Infrastructure

The battle for the Amazon Plans currently call for more than 400 new hydroelectric dams on the rivers of the Amazon basin and on its headwaters tributaries — projects that would block the region’s free-flowing streams and lead to major deforestation, habitat loss and degradation, and possible ecosystem collapse. With this dam building frenzy would come accompanying infrastructure: roads, railways, industrial waterways, transmission lines, new mining operations, agribusiness expansion, logging and settlement Mongabay is looking for article pitches that detail the wide-ranging environmental impacts of hydropower development and ancillary infrastructure development in Amazonia, with a special emphasis on dam building projects in Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, and Brazil (Tapajós basin and elsewhere). We welcome original pitches on any Amazon Infrastructure issue. Here are some suggested topics: environmental impacts, finance and energy development, social impacts and resistance, focus on a specific dam/region, how alternative energy could do away with need for dams. Click here to read more about this opportunity and how to apply....

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New reporting opportunity – Global Environmental Impacts of U.S. Policy
May03

New reporting opportunity – Global Environmental Impacts of U.S. Policy

The mainstream media is widely reporting the most obvious planet-wide impacts of the U.S. government’s recent drastic shift away from policies protecting the environment, in favor of extraction, development and fossil fuels. But there are other policy initiatives in the pipeline, from both the Trump administration and Congress, which will likely have major international repercussions for the global environment. Over the coming months, Mongabay will utilize its international team of contributors and its reputation for insightful reporting on global environmental issues to investigate and analyze international ecosystem impacts resulting from shifting U.S. policies. Mongabay is looking for untold stories of repercussions that new U.S. policies will have on the ground outside the United States, in other nations or regions — impacts on foreign ecosystems, habitats, forests, endangered species and indigenous peoples around the globe. Click here to read more about this opportunity and how to...

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Mongabay in the news, March 2017
Apr28

Mongabay in the news, March 2017

Mongabay’s original reporting is republished and referenced widely by other media outlets in multiple languages, most recently in the BBC to Jakarta Globe and La Semana. In March, Mongabay broke stories like the grounding of a cruise ship on a world-renowned reef in Indonesia, which then appeared in The Guardian and thereafter at BBC, Yahoo News, and many others. Then the news that celebrated musician Paul Simon’s new tour will benefit conservation initiatives of the E.O. Wilson Foundation appeared at Mongabay, and this news was reported on by Rolling Stone, Billboard, and many other entertainment, pop culture, and general interest news outlets afterward. Plus the findings of numerous other articles from ongoing Mongabay series also appeared widely as usual. Here’s a selection of where our reporting turned up this month: AOL News, Africa Insider, Alternet, Asia Pacific Report, Asia Times, BBC News, BBC Mundo, Billboard, Courrier International, Daily Collegian, Daily Hampshire Gazette, Daily Mail, Eco-Business, Ecowatch, The Ecologist, El Espectador, Eurasia Times, Frontier Myanmar, Gizmodo, The Guardian, Huffington Post, Humanitarian News, IFL Science, The Independent, Inhabitat, The Intercept, International News Lens, Jakarta Globe, La Nacion, The Malay Mail, Malaysia Digest, Maritime Executive, Mashable, Mekong Eye, National Geographic, New Security Beat, Pacific Standard, Periodista Digital, La Prensa, Publimetro, RPP Noticias, Rolling Stone, Scroll, Seattle Times, Semana, Straits Times, Truthout, Vice, Viet Nam News, The Wire, Xposé, and Yahoo News. Image: capybaras on a beach in Colombia, by Rhett A. Butler...

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Intern for Mongabay
Apr03

Intern for Mongabay

Get published on a leading environmental news site, improve your writing ability, and become part of a community of passionate and talented journalists by interning at Mongabay! We are now launching our application for our Environmental Journalism Internship program for Summer of 2017. Applications are accepted until June 2, 2017 for our July – December 2017...

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