Weekend reading: Five things I want to share

I’ve not done this for a while, but will try to do it more often…

Can anyone replace the local beat reporter? < < <The Atlantic

An interesting look at beat reporter v unpaid volunteer in the role of watchdog – it also looks at the option for beat report and unpaid volunteer working together if the matter interests the volunteer.

Why it’s time to throw away the dummy < < < Alison Gow

Colleague Alison Gow argues the the dummy, or flatplan, in newsrooms restricts the ability to be creative online. Getting rid of it might not work at the moment, but trying not to be so led by it might help.

What ever you think hyperlocal is, you’re wrong < < < Journal Local

Perhaps the most sensible blog post to come out of the nonsense surrounding the reaction to David Ottewell’s piece about hyperlocal journalists. Authored by Philip John, it sets out the challenges and opportunities excellently, with David Ottewell among those replying and pointing out that, regardless of tag or label, most of us want the same thing.

On Comments < < < David Ottewell

David’s follow up blog to the outrage caused by the fact he wasn’t on hand to instantly moderate comments posted in reaction to his piece questioning the role of some hyperlocal sites. As I have commented to David on this post, much of the reaction failed to acknowledge his support for the Salford Star, or indeed the fact his assertions about hyperlocal were clearly labelled as his own experiences. Is this a sign that one trait of journalism, to always go for the negative and sensationalist, lives on?

The anti-propaganda propaganda machine keeps crowing < < <853

Fascinating looks at the ongoing row between the News Shopper and Greenwich Council, which insists on publishing a council newspaper on a weekly basis which competes unfairly against said News Shopper. Darryl Chamberlain makes the point that the argument about it damaging the local media, which helps hold the council to account, only works if the media is currently attempting to hold the council to account. However, even if a paper’s coverage of the council is found to be lacking, having a council newspaper isn’t the solution.

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