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Newsrooms are Shrinking. Here’s how they’re Finding New Ways to Hold the Government Accountable by Kristen Hare Jairam

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Kristen Hare Jairam covers local news innovation for the Poynter Institute. Her work for Poynter has earned her a Mirror Award nomination. Hare, a graduate of the University of Missouri's School of Journalism, spent 5 years as the Sunday features writer and an assistant editor at the St. Joseph (Missouri) News-Press, and five years as a staff writer covering race, immigration, the census and aging at the St. Louis Beacon. She also spent two years with the Peace Corps in Guyana, South America. Hare and her family live outside Tampa. She’s the author of the book “100 Things to do in Tampa Bay Before You Die.”

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
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Newsrooms are Shrinking. Here’s how they’re Finding New Ways to Hold the Government Accountable by Kristen Hare Jairam

  1. 1. Newsrooms are shrinking Here’s how they’re finding new ways to hold governments accountable
  2. 2. “Most truths are so naked that people feel sorry for them and cover them up, at least a little bit.” - Edward R. Murrow, who said lots of good stuff and probably would have been in favor of Facebook publishing fact checks (just guessing.)
  3. 3. Let’s time travel to 2008
  4. 4. Let’s go to 2012 now.
  5. 5. And now to 2016...
  6. 6. Thank you!!!
  7. 7. So here we are in 2018.
  8. 8. AND newsrooms in the U.S. are shrinking.
  9. 9. But don’t give up on news yet. Here are three newsrooms that are finding new ways to cover their local governments.
  10. 10. At Mississippi Today, a good, old-fashioned fact check.
  11. 11. How they did it: 1. Divide and conquer. 2. Take your time. 3. Be ready for pushback.
  12. 12. The response...
  13. 13. “When something that should be as routine as a factcheck can draw so much vitriol from the public officials who should be accountable to the public, it just illustrates the importance of the work we do every day.” - Ryan Nave, Mississippi Today
  14. 14. At NOWCastSA, “public television on the internet”
  15. 15. “It helped voters gain an awareness of the candidate’s values, which allowed them to make a more informed decision.” -Shelley Kofler, Fort Worth Star Telegram
  16. 16. How they do it - Partners - Volunteers and interns - Full transparency
  17. 17. City Bureau hires citizens to document what’s happening
  18. 18. How they do it 1. Give them a lot of ways to get involved 2. Train them 3. Pay them
  19. 19. What do all these projects have in common?
  20. 20. “Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants, electric light the most efficient policeman.” - Louis Brandeis
  21. 21. Thank you! (I’m at khare@poynter.org and @kristenhare, say hi!)

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