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Most News Still Comes From Traditional Media

A new study by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism finds that much of the “news” people receive contains no original reporting. Said another way, only a few traditional outlets report on the news, the rest repeat it. The study examined all the outlets that produced local news in Baltimore, Maryland, over the course of a one week period, finding that eight out of ten stories simply repeated or repackaged previously published information. Is this an isolated incident over the course of one news week? Is this data limited to the news cycle in one U.S. market? It’s hard to say. It certainly raises some interesting questions about the quality of local news content in your market. [Read more...]

Is Twitter the New Wire Service?

Much of the news we get from local papers originates from wire services. This is the end result of multiple studies conducted over the past couple of years, a few of which are summarized in this excellent post by Nikki Usher on OJR: The Online Journalism Review. Newspapers often get the credit for being the originators of news in local markets, but upon further investigation, a majority of that content comes from wire services. Journalists at local papers serve as filters of wire content and determine which stories to run. [Read more...]

The Future of Local News is You

I’m tired of seeing the small community newspapers go under. Times are tough and traditional business models no longer sustain small publishers in small markets. It appears that most small publishers, particularly in smaller markets, lack the resources and knowledge of new business models to evolve or transform. What disturbs me most about this is the lack of risk-taking among small market journalists. There are thousands of journalists out there that have the potential to solve the local news challenge on their own – they just don’t know it yet. Where are the entrepreneurs? [Read more...]