ORLANDO, Florida – If you do, a 12-year-old schoolboy from Orlando, Florida, may just have the answer.
Between juggling homework, orchestra rehearsals and cello lessons Max Jones has set about building an online television empire that specializes in all that is good in the world. He has already set up Weekend News Today at www.hnheadlines.com, for which he is the senior anchor, but envisions one day presiding over a network of 15 sites.
Some might scoff at this ambition but his flagship project garners up to 5,000 hits a day and has attracted unpaid teen interns from across the globe to write and edit video and written content.
“I really think that one person can make a difference in the world, just bit by bit,” Max told AFP. “You get so many opportunities with being a journalist, and you get to see so many things that other people would not get to see. I just wanted to get out there now, and I like starting things before anybody else. I wanted to get ahead of the game.”
In December he turned his bedroom closet into a TV studio where he spends some five hours a week - more in the summer - writing opinion pieces, taping video segments, gathering contributors and forging partnerships with other sites that share his good news zeal.
Max, who is also taking online journalism courses, found a lot of his contributors on websites like craigslist and www.internship.com. He has virtually no advertisers and is applying for non-profit status, but he generates marginal income by selling content on an online consignment shop.
Max has had success with the author of a book on North Korea who he had tracked down after Asian-American journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee were taken captive while reporting near the Chinese border.
He became very active in the cause to free them, and after they were released during an historic visit to North Korea by former president Bill Clinton, he received a call from Ling herself thanking him for his help. - AFP