LAPIDO MEDIA: CENTRE FOR RELIGIOUS LITERACY IN JOURNALISM
WHO WE ARE
We are journalists, producers, media leaders, people of faith, spiritual leaders, researchers, trainers, activists, academics and members of the public. Our network unites those with a passion for improving religious literacy right across the media, from the smallest start-ups to the biggest corporates.
Our goal? Well quite simply it is to advance religious literacy right across the media. Why? Because a religiously literate media paints a richer and more accurate picture of life. That's the kind of media the public can have genuine faith in.
Operating for over ten years, we straddle the boundary between media organisation and registered charity. We are accountable to our board of trustees and to the British Charity Commission. To keep our standards high and our sense of accountability sharp, we also voluntarily associate with a range of other best practice bodies.
How we're advancing religious literacy in the media
Improving every journalist's religious literacy, whatever stage of their career, wherever and however they work
TRAINING PEOPLE OF FAITH
Training faith voices in putting their point across and working with media makers
PRODUCING GREAT JOURNALISM
Probing, advising, collaborating and creating thought-provoking media, centred on religious literacy
Routinely challenging religious illiteracy in the media
It's easy for anyone to claim a moral high ground when it comes to the sensitive world of personal values - moral, religious or spiritual. While tempting for any person insist on their own interpretation of the world, the ability to coherently understand and then faithfully portray these outlooks and belief systems is a far trickier affair.
Great news though! It is entirely possible to possess a high standard of religious literacy.
To express a religiously literate outlook requires an open and enquiring mind. It demands critical thinking, empathy and a willingness to suspend personal judgment for long enough to gain insight.
This should always be in pursuit of understanding other beliefs, not to belittle or undermine them.
Understanding and agreement are two very different things.
When our media can collectively demonstrate a high level of religious literacy it could transform society.
Yes, transform society. You read that right!
Knowing with accuracy what others believe creates all kinds of incredible opportunities in our everyday lives. It’s probably one of the few 'quests for truth' that the vast majority of people can agree on.
So our role is to invigorate the media; to ensure that all journalists are free, confident and highly informed in tackling stories with a religious or spiritual dimension. Arguably, this could apply to most media coverage, not just hard news or foreign affairs.
A word to the journalists
This is absolutely not about censorship, brainwashing you or forcing you to accept particular agendas! We believe that the media should be genuinely free to explore and report on what it needs to. Access all areas. Yet through unconscious or conscious bias and a lack of informed understanding, media makers can quickly cut themselves off from abundant and genuine stories. Many of you will even have personal experience of this within your organisations, as do we.
We want to reverse this trend. We want to open up the world, its beliefs and practices, ripe for the picking when it comes to media storytelling. We need to know that you’re in on this with us!
Something to think about if you are a person of faith
If you feel 'the media' is against you, we urge you to look deeper. The media does not share one mind. Equally, neither are you as a person of faith - you have a mind and opinions of your own. Sometimes these will go against the prevailing trends of your dominant belief culture. And so it is with journalists. There are many journalists who are willing to hear your side of the story, and committed to reflecting you accurately. In fact they need you if they are going to tell the most honest, accurate and compelling stories of their careers. You have a crucial role to play!
There are ways that your understanding of media makers' challenges can help.
The media ecosystem is facing a period of intense volatility and in many cases job insecurity. The pressure is on. There are real people behind what’s out there in the media. We care about the people in this industry and their wellbeing, and we care about the quality of their work. If you can see the humanity in media makers, as we do, it will be easier to walk alongside them and us, to help media standards of religious literacy improve.
Faith makers and media makers, let’s change this game together!