Public Lab Wiki documentation

The Barnraiser

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The Barnraiser is a 1-page daily "newspaper" we're publishing during the PL Barnraising as part of the Documentation Committee (DocCom).

We see it as a lighthearted (but hard-hitting journalistic) way to summarize and share in a succinct, low-burden, but regular way, what's going on at our busiest and most productive event of the year! These mini newspapers were inspired by ones made by Lucia Jazayeri, who does Creative Direction at Clover Food Lab.



Download the Reporter's Worksheet here: reporters-worksheet-2.pdf

Activities should include a materials list, costs and a step-by-step guide to construction with photos. Learn what makes a good activity here.



We do a paper-based layout, as shown above, on a poster!!

Each column is 1/2 of a letter sized sheet, and two pages tall, for a 4 or 5 column wide layout, depending on how much content you have. Articles are hand-written in sharpie.

We pre-draw the header (masthead?) on the poster, and reuse the layout -- use tape you can remove.

Once completed, we photograph the poster and increase contrast and brightness to get a clean copy.

Then we import it into Google Presentations and place the images in their spots digitally. We set the page size to custom -- letter sized -- and export as PDF.

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The very serious journalists of the Barnraiser in West Virginia. @zengirl2 and Carla!



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Join the Barnraiser's "staff"! Despite limited page space, we're happy for any help we can get! Please also leave a comment to get involved.

We're specifically looking for:

  • reporters to cover Barnraising events, sessions, and culture
  • photographers to get great front-page images
  • editors to help polish/trim/layout the final paper
  • publishers to get up early to print & distribute

Over the course of the day, we collect article ideas on the poster layout in the main event space -- and we ask for article ideas at the beginning and end of each day.

2017 Barnraising

Issue 1


Issue 2


We're starting by taking notes on the layout board in the Auditorium, and on this notepad:

You can also post pictures, notes, comments, or anything here:

Editorial & Layout Meeting

We'll be meeting just after dinner to collect up articles, and start layout for our first issue. Find Jeff!

Typically, we ask folks to collect story ideas and take notes throughout the day -- at the Barnraising, each session tries to wrap up with some "takeaways" to report back during dinner. These are also great story material, and asking people for articles during the dinner report-backs is a good way to invite people to join in.

Photos may be posted to social media under the hashtags #barnraising and #barnraising2017 --

Please feel free to upload images to this post:

2019 Galveston Barnraising


2018 Newark Barnraising



2017 Annual Barnraising

Appalachia Barnraiser


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We'll use the talk page of this wiki page as a (chaotic) staging area to collect material and links over the course of each day. Please dump content there with your name -- and/or just take paper notes and come to the editorial meeting at the end of the day!


IMG_20170624_213929_767.jpg IMG_20170624_150422_187.jpg

Past issues


2 issues: The_Barnraiser_2016_v2i1.pdf

Working images from 2015 can be found here

2016 Annual Barnraising

Issue 1: Friday Nov 19

PDF: barnraiser-2015-11-19.pdf


Issue 2: Saturday Nov 20

PDF: The_Barnraiser--Saturday__Nov_20.pdf


Issue 3: Sunday Nov 21

PDF: The_Barnraiser--Sunday__Nov_21.pdf




2015 Logos, graphics: barnraiser.svg and barnraiser.png

Compiled pdfs: