A project of Democracy Fund

August 26, 2017

Local Fix: Let’s Be Careful Out There


Welcome to the Local Fix. Each week we look at key debates in journalism sustainability and community engagement through the lens of local news.  But first, we always begin with one good idea…

One Good Idea: Let’s Be Careful Out There
Journalists who covered Hurricane Andrew shared what they’ve learned since with Poynter as Hurricane Harvey threatens Texas. Committee to Protect Journalists has more tips for safety in their security guide.

Extra Boba, Please

Michael Twitty, a prominent culinary historian, author, and blogger at Afroculinaria recently published a set of “rules of engagement” for food journalism in a multicultural America. I thought about his piece after reading the disastrous New York Times bubble tea trend story that came out last week. The rules are certainly vital for those in the food journalism world at the New York Times and beyond, but could apply to any beat or focus.

“Start within. Be neighborly. Seek and you shall find. Look beyond our pain. Encourage ‘Their Story’ not ‘His-story.’ Celebrate, don’t discover. Go big. Ditch the drama. Watch out for ‘authenticity.’ “

Like and Subscribe

Facebook announced that they’ll be experimenting with paid subscriptions in Instant Articles last week. Google has also been experimenting with different tools that can help publishers build their subscription base. Could these developments help local news publishers? It’s too soon to tell, but keep an eye on it as it develops.

You and Me Got a Whole Lot of History

Time to get meta – we went back into our own archives to share some useful links and information about how newsrooms can use archives to their advantage. Archives provide opportunities to add context to current events, revisit stories, and mine for evergreen content. They can even provide a reliable look at history counter to some of the more viral social media site that share inaccurate historical images and facts. Archives also can easily be lost in this digital age. Here are some ideas how to use the archives when you find them:

Have a good weekend,
Josh and Teresa
@jcstearns, @gteresa

The Local Fix is a project of the Democracy Fund’s Public Square Program, which invests in innovations and institutions that are reinventing local media and expanding the public square. Disclosure: Some projects mentioned in this newsletter may be funded by Democracy Fund, you can find a full list of the organizations we support on our website.