J-Lab, the Institute for Interactive Journalism, says winners will be announced Sept. 17 at a symposium and luncheon, "Creativity Unleashed," at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. There's a top prize of $10,000.
Some of the finalists:
CFR.org Crisis Guides – In-depth, interactive news and information guides to the world's most pressing crisis zones that seek to operate according to the tenets of objective journalism within a think tank, the Council on Foreign Relations. They help make sense of complex issues beyond U.S. borders.
Second Life Virtual News Bureau – Reuters' virtual news bureau in the online 3D world known as Second Life is engaging more than 7 million users in financial news, participatory interviews with top newsmakers and virtual news delivery devices, all anchored within the professionalism of Reuters' real world practice of journalism.
TechPresident.com – A data-rich, group blog that is breaking investigative stories, collecting voter-generated content, and charting the metrics of a net-centric presidential campaign – from tracking video views of candidates on YouTube, numbers of their "friends" on MySpace and Facebook, voter demands for appearances on Eventful, blog mentions on Technorati and voter-generated photos on Flickr.
MyTeam Varsity High School Sports – The OrlandoSentinel.com's highly participative high school sports zone shows the newspaper's commitment to serving its community by offering every school a customized sports page and every parent a way to track an athlete. User-generated content supplies scores, schedules, announcements, photos and ways to compare high school statistics in Central Florida.
onBeing – The washingtonpost.com's engrossing video-portrait series captures intimate, unexpected stories that citizen narrators share with an invisible journalist who distills the epiphanies of commonalities among her diverse subjects. Each video can be viewed, downloaded, e-mailed, sent by cell phone or discussed.
The Forum – An all-volunteer online newspaper for Deerfield, N.H., that in two years has become the major source of news for three rural communities. In a readership area of 7,000 homes, it has more than 200 bylined contributors and averages 37 original articles per week, excluding obituaries, classifieds, letters to the editor and events listings.
Also, Citizens Media III is set for Oct.2. Go here.