Build for a crisis: ideas for the future of local news

Outlier Media’s first white paper on how local news can be an essential service by working first to meet local information needs. This was developed with the belief that for local news to have a future, it has to be built for people when they truly need information before it is built for people when they are just curious.

El Tímpano Impact Report 2021

El Tímpano’s first impact report outlines how they expanded their work and organization to inform, engage, and amplify the voices of communities most directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The organization filled a gap in Spanish-language news and information and provided a platform for more than a thousand Latino and Mayan immigrants to share, in real-time, their experience of the pandemic.

Imagined Audiences: How Journalists Perceive and Pursue the Public

Imagined Audiences draws on ethnographic case studies of three news organizations to reveal how journalists’ assumptions about their audiences shape their approaches to their audiences. Jacob L. Nelson examines the role that audiences have traditionally played in journalism, how that role has changed, and what those changes mean for both the profession and the public.

KQED Source Diversity

The goal of the audit is to provide a baseline understanding of KQED’s source diversity using five measures: gender, race/ethnicity, age group, geographic location, and profession. These data will be used in the creation of a sustainable source diversity tracking system, as well as to help inform decision-making and goal setting.

A Manifesto for a People’s Newsroom

The Bureau Local is a people-powered network setting the news agenda and sparking change, from the ground up. Over the past three years we have set out to make sure news is working for everyone and to do so, we’ve been changing the way it’s done. Whether it is austerity or Brexit, health or education, people across the UK experience inequality in their treatment and how their stories are told, if told at all. That’s why we focus our journalism on shining a light on the power, decisions and policies that threaten the public interest of all people across the UK.

Engaged Journalism and News Work: A Sociotechnical Analysis of Organizational Dynamics and Professional Challenges

This study examines organizational dynamics, technological affordances and professional challenges of engaged journalism practices by analyzing how Hearken, one of the most celebrated audience engagement companies and its tools and services are being implemented in 15 U.S. news organizations. This framework identifies Hearken and organizations like it as important “external actors” providing technological “actants” that are shaping how newsrooms report the news by providing ways for audiences to be brought into producing the news, particularly during the earlier phases of the reporting process. Ultimately, this study presents a partial update to the decades-long literature on participatory journalism by suggesting that engaged journalism practices actually create opportunities for meaningful audience involvement.

The Ethics of Engaged Journalism

Journalism has little purpose if it is not trusted by the public it is meant to serve, so public engagement and public trust are inseparable in the networked world of digital journalism. Engaged journalists are starting to ask, “How can we help people trust each other?” In addition to representing the public interest, engaged journalism involves the public as true partners, enabling journalism to become complete, more accurate, more trusted, and more meaningful.

The View From Somewhere

#MeToo. #BlackLivesMatter. #NeverAgain. #WontBeErased. Though both the right- and left-wing media claim “objectivity” in their reporting of these and other contentious issues, the American public has become increasingly cynical about truth, fact, and reality. In The View from Somewhere, Lewis Raven Wallace dives deep into the history of “objectivity” in journalism and how its been used to gatekeep and silence marginalized writers as far back as Ida B. Wells. There’s also an accompanying podcast.

Collaborative Data Journalism Guide

Huge datasets that cover vital national issues are coming out of the federal government every day, and within them hide endless numbers of story leads for local journalists. With the proliferation of available data, it’s become common for newsrooms to have access to datasets that contain more story leads than they can meaningfully pursue themselves. Collaborative data journalism allows multiple newsrooms to find and tell those stories, increasing impactful stories told.