Funders wield immense power over the field of nonprofit news, from what they choose to value and support, to how the boundaries of “journalism” are defined, to how they design their systems and processes. Any nonprofit that has ever tried to figure out how to get its foot in the door with a funder, or …
…he field, Will Wright, went to cover Eastern Kentucky, which voted overwhelmingly for Donald Trump. His stories were not about Trump or the Supreme Court — they were about the people there not having running drinking water for a week. When his reporting helped get the state to fix the water system, local residents were thrilled, and forgave Will for working for a newspaper.
It’s harder to believe that everything is “fake news” when the journalist you meet at back-to-school night, your kid’s football practice, or in the local coffee shop is not just your neighbor, but someone who is also reporting on important local stories that you know to be true.
Student trust in citizen journalism is on the rise: In 2016, 26 percent of students said they trusted content — pictures, videos and accounts — posted by people more than traditional news sources; this number grew to 40 percent in 2018. Teachers also show large increases in trust for citizen journalism efforts.
High school students show strong support for the First Amendment, but what those rights mean is increasingly up for debate. Technology, along with changing perceptions of the media and who gets to deliver news are creating gray areas. These competing views and habits can have an effect on the freedoms that the First Amendment guarantees. Understanding them will help to preserve our most fundamental rights into the future.
A deep dive into the academic literature tells us that the “echo chambers” narrative captures, at most, the experience of a minority of the public. Indeed, this claim itself has ironically been amplified and distorted in a kind of echo chamber effect.
Ultimately, the Colorado Media Project concluded that our local news ecosystem requires more investment from — and engagement with — our local communities in order to survive. Chalkbeat co-founder Elizabeth Green estimates this to be a $1 billion problem nationally, and both…
… builds over time. That also applies in the relationship between journalists and their communities. Trust in a news organization develops when people know they can turn to you consistently for reliable information. It happens when people feel they are being heard. It happens when they see their own lives and priorities reflected in your news coverage. It happens when they have confidence in the decisions, values and ethics taking place in your newsrooms.
Three quarters (73 percent) say that all users should be shown the same topics as opposed to being shown topics based on their interest and activity. And eight in 10 say that, for a given topic, all users should be shown items from the same news organizations. Only 17 percent of respondents reported they would prefer these companies to show each user news from sources they seem to prefer based on their interests and activity.