Children's PressLine Uses iPods To Score Political Interviews

While its impact on culture is well known and oft touted, Appleis iPod is having an effect even on politics, according to a childrenis journalist group called the Childrenis PressLine (CPL). With its roots in another organization called Childrenis Express, the CPL has covered every Democratic and Republican national conventions since 1976. When two CPL reporters found themselves confined to the back of the crowd (with the rest of the press) by the Secret Service this week in an RNC event attended by vice president Dick Cheney, two of CPLis reporters turned to their iPods to score some interviews at the front of the hall. From a press release from the CPL:

Childrenis PressLine reporter Marie Ponsot, 11, and her editor, Kibuchi Banfield, 17, were denied close access to an event attended by Vice President Cheney, Governor Pataki, and former Mayor Giuliani. Having been spotted by secret service, they were told that all press needed to be in the back, way back, from the event.

The fast-thinking team quickly ditched their video crew, changed out of their bright gold-colored CPL-logo shirts and snuck back to the front using an iPod and tiny microphone, and scored interviews with the several of the dignitaries.

Getting those recorded interviews is important to CPLis reporters because the group emphasizes oral interviews. By relying on the spoken word rather than the written word," says the groupis About Web page, "this methodology facilitates the participation of children of all ages and literacy levels." Using their iPods, these two young people were able to continue with their tradition, even in the midst of todayis heightened security restrictions.

For more information on the CPL, including kidsi perceptions of the political process, visit the groupis Web site. The CPL has been covering the Democratic and Republican campaigns from the beginning of the current political season.