Batten Finalists Honor Innovative Journalism

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Five finalists have been named in the new Batten Awards for Innovations in Journalism, which are sponsored by J-Lab: The Institute for Interactive Journalism in College Park, Md.

The $10,000 winner and two $2,500 runners-up will be announced Sept. 15 at the Batten Awards Symposium in Washington.

The finalists are:

* Minnesota Public Radio’s “Budget Balancer,” a Web game that challenges users to fix the state’s $4.2 billion budget deficit.

* The Chicago Tribune‘s special CD-ROM package on the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The CD-ROM was distributed on the one-year anniversary of 9-11.

* The San Francisco Chronicle‘s virtual man-on-the-street database of more than 1,450 residents who contribute and react to articles and opinion pieces in the newspaper.

* MSNBC.com’s “The Big Picture,” a series of in-depth guided tours on Iraq, the 2002 elections, and the Oscars, that integrated text and multimedia elements.

* VillageSoup.com for its community Web sites that deliver homespun news on three Maine towns.

For more information on the awards, finalists, and other notable entries, visit http://www.j-lab.org.

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