MonthMarch 2016

Citizen journalism IS community journalism

From The Fresno Nee:

Communities prosper with transparency. A writer can help ensure the voiceless have a voice. We need people to keep an eye on public life.

There is no substitute for coverage of locally produced news. Such information remains vital and continues to be extremely popular. The public is hungry for responsible storytelling. Larger media sources will not always cover the everyday stories from smaller communities unless there’s a sensational element, most often extremely negative and filled with turmoil and drama.

Yet more and more, the support for local journalism is declining. Smaller newspapers are barely hanging on, budgets to pay for reporters and local coverage are declining.

There are exceptions, but I rarely encounter  citizen journalism that does not seek to provide community-based transparency. And it almost always exists in an environment where the local (but not locally owned) mainstream media is is not cutting back on coverage and siphoning profits out of town.
Citizen journalism is people-powered media and is unconcerned with buying the CEO that second yacht.

Chicago’s City Bureau sounds like successful citizen journalism

No doubt Chicago’s City Bureau would object to being identified at merely citizen journalism. But citizen journalism would benefit from their lessons:

Police accountability in Chicago would have been a meaty, important story anytime. But when City Bureau, a nonprofit community newsroom rooted in the city’s South and West sides, launched last fall with city policing as its initial focus, the timing hardly could have been more apt.

In mid-October the bureau published its first story, about protests over the acquittal of an officer who shot and killed a 22-year-old woman. Soon after, it held its first community forum, tied to the release of a database on police misconduct complaint. Then in mid-November, a judge ruled that dash-cam footage of an officer fatally shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald in 2014 had to be released as a public record, setting off an activist campaign that would lead to the defeat of Cook County prosecutor Anita Alvarez last week in the Democratic primary.

The events thrust Chicago back to the forefront of a growing debate over police reform and accountability for abuse—and City Bureau, a creative startup that aims to train young journalists and improve coverage of underreported neighborhoods, also had a national story in its sights.

City Bureau is the brainchild of four young Chicagoans: Darryl Holliday, Bettina Chang, Andrea Hart, and Harry Backlund. Part training lab, part response to an era of slashed news budgets, the bureau is more a network and platform for partnerships than a traditional news outlet. Collaboration—among bureau members, with local neighborhoods, and with publications and other institutions—is central to the model.



Is it time for a push for new BP members?

I’ve been sorta laying low with the Blog Peoria Project for many months.

But with the mass media continuing to die off and become irrelevant, and with our government about ready to be taken over by a well, a fascist, it may just be time for a new push to get people committing acts of citizen journalism again.

I’ve been busy with the citizen-journalism site,

But I’ve getting real worried about this country. Avery one is glued to their tubes watching yet another Donald J. Trump rally. Frankly, I have a firm’No Nazi’ policy that keeps me from covering The Donald.

But why all the Trump coverage? Money. And that’s due to corporate greed.