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Thursday, May 05, 2005

Bloggers Gather for First-Ever CARR Training at BlogNashville

A small, but potentially quite significant bit of Blogosphere history was made today at the Freedom Forum's Diversity Institute at Vanderbilt University, as 12 bloggers from around the country gathered for day one of the first-ever Media Bloggers Association-hosted Database 101/201 Computer-Assisted Research and Reporting (CARR) Boot Camp.

Among those attending are Kicking Over My Traces' Shelley Henderson, Eric Scheie of Classical Values, Chris Rogers of New Shoes Media, Kevin Barbieux of nashvilleis.com, Mick Wright of the MBA, Sybril Bennett, Executive Director of the New Century Journalism Program at Belmont University in Nashville, Kent Flanagan, recently retired after 21 years as AP's Tennessee Bureau Chief, Kristin Hall, a Middle Tennessee State University journalism student, Blake Wylie of HasnvilleFiles.com, Natalie Arnold of WKRN-2 in Nashville, Andy Wibbels of Easy Bake Weblogs, and Doug Petch of Dougpetch.com.

Among the first day instructors was yours truly, who conducted a couple of morning sessions covering basic skills in using Microsoft Excel to analyze spreadsheet data, David Kamin of the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities on using Excel to analyze Social Security Administration data and Kirk Johnson of The Heritage Foundation's Center for Data Analysis on finding and using data from federal agencies like the U.S. Census Bureau and Bureau of Labor Statistics.

MBA head honcho Bob Cox has some photos of day one here.

The boot camps were begun in 2000 by The Heritage Foundation's Center for Media and Public Policy and have graduated more than 200 editors, producers, reporters, researchers and graphics artists representing every major MSM organization in America. The BlogNashville event is the first-ever in which the Heritage program is being co-hosted by the conservative Heritage and the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, a liberal think tank also based in the nation's capitol.