The Arizona Republic caused a stir this week when it told reporters with three community sections that they were getting laptops — and henceforth needed to work out public wi-fi centers instead of a formal newsroom. The Phoenix Business Journal reports that the journalists were told to seek out Starbucks and McDonald’s as work locations. … Continue reading
Our community news sites make a couple’s dream come true
Investigative reporters like to talk about the impact their stories have had — corruption exposed, laws changed, the sort of things that win Pulitzer Prizes. Community journalists like to talk about the impact their work has had, too. It’s just on a different scale. Here’s one neat example from today: Thanks to two of our … Continue reading
Were we the first to put journalists in coffeeshops?
Over the years, I’ve seen chatter in the industry from time to time about the idea of stationing journalists in coffee shops. David Cohn, aka “digidave,” wrote about this concept in this 2009 blog post which envisions a newspaper that operates a coffee shop. The idea is to take journalists out from behind their downtown … Continue reading
Why you should cover homecomings and proms
One of the signature things we do with our community publications in Roanoke is cover high school homecomings and proms. Our target audience isn’t the kids; it’s their moms. Our community publications focus very tightly on women with kids in the home — i.e., soccer moms. That means lots of schools coverage, lots of coverage … Continue reading
Is Koto-zukuri the future of news?
In the newspaper business, newsroom types would often fret about something called “advertorial” — ads that were designed to look like news content. The company always made sure they were prominently labelled as advertising content (the labels were never big enough to satisfy news types) and that the text was in a font that the … Continue reading
Why Patch failed in so many places
So why did so many of the AOL hyperlocal sites fail? Of all the reasons being expounded, here are two I’ll add to the list based on our experiences here in Roanoke. * Not all communities are communities. Some are simply places. For a hyperlocal site to work, it needs to be built around a … Continue reading