Date: 19 May, 2017
Time: 3pm-4pm
Location: Room 601, Michie Building (#9)


When a local community stands up against fake news: The Change Makers’ Project

In 2013 two media events sparked outrage from residents in a community in Brisbane’s south. The low socio-economic community of Logan City, which has long been subject to mainstream media stereotyping in Australia, was again thrust into the national spotlight. A disagreement between two families of diverse ethnicities in one of the city’s residential streets received sustained, national coverage under the guise of ‘race riots’. The coverage was followed-up by a report on one of Australia’s leading tabloid current affairs programs that featured an ‘investigation’ into teenage gangs in the city. It was a concerning story, but there was a problem. The young people showcased were not gang members, but high school students. The teenagers had been coerced by the news channel to appear on the program, where they were grossly misrepresented. This fake news had dire repercussions. The students received threats from the ‘real’ gangs and didn’t attend school for weeks. However, this fake news also produced a proactive response from the community. The affected students hatched a plan to produce their own hyperlocal news publication to counter the mainstream media’s stigmatising of their community. The Change Makers’ Project was born. This paper uses this case study as a pathway to explore how fake news is inspiring communities to produce their own media using collaborative and non-traditional methods. The results, in this instance, have been amazing with the project winning national journalism awards. The paper uses interviews and reflexivity to map the evolution of this hyperlocal journalism project.​



Dr Scott Downman and Mr Richard Murray

Dr Scott Downman
Mr Richard Murray


About Research Seminar and Workshop Series

The research seminar and workshop series' occur each semester, each with a different topic and guest speaker from UQ or otherwise.

The seminars occur on a Friday afternoon from 3-4 pm in Room 601 in the Michie Building (#9).

Semester 1, 2017 Seminars & Workshops


Week 5:
Wednesday, 29 March

Seminar:  The disruptions of gold: some archaeology of the literary cultures of the global south

IASH Seminar Room, Level 4, Forgan Smith Tower (Bldg #1)

Prof Philip Mead, Chair of Australian Literature at the University of Western Australia

Week 6:
Friday, 7 April

Seminar: Strategising communication and collective action towards sustainable nomadic livelihoods (Mongolia)​

Room 601, Michie Building (#9)

A/Prof Elske Van de Fliert

Week 8:
Friday, 28 April

Seminar: Ageing in a foreign land: A social identity approach to enhancing connectedness and well-being

Room 601, Michie Building (#9)

A/Prof Shuang Liu

Week 9:
Friday, 5 May

Workshop: ARC Applications - What I Wish I'd Known

Room 601, Michie Building (#9)

Afternoon tea will be served in the kitchen area of level 6 of Michie building at the end of the session

Dr Kim Wilkins

Aims: To provide information on the do's and don'ts related to preparing for ARC grant applications

Audience: Early Career Researchers; Staff new to the ARC

Week 10:
Friday, 12 May

Workshop: ARC Fellowships - When, Why & How

Room 601, Michie Building (#9)

Afternoon tea will be served in the kitchen area of level 6 of Michie building at the end of the session


A/Prof Anna Johnston and Dr Jessica White

Aims: To provide information on ARC future Fellowship, DECRA, & other fellowships

Audience: Staff who are planning to apply for ARC fellowships, and/or other fellowships


Week 11:
Friday, 19 May

Seminar: Hyperlocal Journalism & Digital Disruption

Room 601, Michie Building (#9)

Dr Scott Downman and Mr Richard Murray
Week 12: 
Friday, 26 May

Seminar: Copyright and Creativity: Is Australian Policy Hurting Creators?

Room 601, Michie Building (#9)

University Professor Patricia Aufderheide (School of Communication, American University)
Friday 9 June

Seminar: The Poetics of Religious Toleration in the Long British Eighteenth Century

Room 601, Michie Building (#9)

Dr Brandon Chua
Exam Period:
Friday, 16 June

Workshop: ARC Linkage Grants - When, Why & How

Room 601, Michie Building (#9)

Afternoon tea will be served in the kitchen area of level 6 of Michie building at the end of the session

A/Prof Shuang LiuMs Sarina Hobbin, Prof Annemaree Carroll

Aims: To provide information on building ARC Linkage grant applications including negotiating with partner organisations

Audience: Staff who are considering developing ARC Linkage grant applications


Level 6, Michie Building (#9)