When journalists uncover scandal and deception, they often give the accused a headline-ready name, such as the Chicago Seven, the Keating Five, or the baker’s dozen. Bite into accuracy with today's Groupon: for $300, you get a six-week Citizen Backpack Journalism Course from Montgomery Community Media in Rockville (a $600 value).
Professional instructors at Montgomery Community Media teach classes of students ages 13 and older how to report, film, produce, and edit their own feature news stories, which then air on The Montgomery Channel and Access19. In six weeks, students attend four four-hour hands-on sessions, learning shooting basics, story composition, camera setup, and microphone-twirling tricks before setting out on their own to film their chosen story. The class includes all materials, use of editing software, and equipment such as Sony Bloggie High-Definition cameras. After students film their feature story, they learn to edit it using Final Cut Pro software, with the finished piece airing on local channels, posted online, and burned onto a DVD that can be played in the background at house parties.