It looks professionally – without developers.

Martin Schibbye, Blankspot Project

Hello Martin! As a journalist, you're most famous for having spent 438 days in an Ethiopian prison – just for doing your job. Now you're the editor-in-chief of Blankspot. Tell us about that.

– Blankspot is a news-reporting site for overseas investigative journalism. It started through crowd funding and now it’s funded by reader contributions. People say journalism is in crisis, although at the same time journalists who are out in the world have a target on their back. We want to show that the first part is wrong, but that we can also equip ourselves better to deal with the threats to our safety. So, besides journalism from the hidden corners of Earth, Blankspot also offers security courses for journalists and aid workers.

And you use Confetti to present these courses?

– Exactly. Brit Stakston, the writer and speaker, is a co-founder and recommended Confetti as a professional and easy way to present the courses. At that time, we didn’t have a developer, so we needed a tool where we could control everything ourselves. And I find it easy to handle both course participants and payments in Confetti.

So what do participants learn in your courses?

– Loads. It's an intense and practical course where 10-12 participants practice situations that a journalist can risk ending up in. For example, it might be kidnapping, interrogation, terrorist attacks, flooding or forest fires. We're talking about questions such as: What do I do if something goes wrong? How can I continue to report sensibly? And how do I gain the trust of extremist groups?

What’s the key to a rewarding course?

– First of all, a course must meet a need. Ours really do that; many journalists feel worried about the increased risks, and want tools to handle the difficult situations in their job. Secondly, the course should be "for real" – so not only sitting in a classroom but getting out and doing realistic exercises.

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