There’s no dearth of informative content for affluent readers — see the surge of coverage of Amazon’s Prime Day earlier this week, when countless news organizations and websites trotted out their guides to the best deals and simultaneously raked in affiliate revenue. The New York Times’ successful Smarter Living section and newsletter appeal to people who have enough free time and money to not just get through the day but to hack it.
But for all of the people who have the kinds of jobs that allow them the space and flexibility to shop for the best deals on smart doorbells and stick vacuums from their desks, there are way more people for whom that’s unfathomable — and news organizations need to be doing a better job of serving them. Initiatives like the Detroit-based Outlier Media, which mass-texts local information on topics to like housing, inspections, and utilities, is, well, Continue reading "“There is no Wirecutter for the poor,” but if there were, what would it look like?"
Syracuse’sWhitney Phillips — scholar of the darker corners of Internet culture, author of “The Oxygen of Amplification,” last seen here offering this dire observation/prediction last winter — has a new paper out in Social Media + Society that might make be a bracing experience for some Nieman Lab readers.
When we think of the nightmarish edge of online culture — the trolling, the disinformation, the rage, the profound information pollution — it’s easy to think of the worst offenders. 4chan denizens, for-the-lulz trolls, actual Nazis — you know the type. But, she writes, maybe the origins of those phenomena aren’t only in those dark corners of Internet culture — maybe they’re also in the kind of good Internet culture, the kind that people sometimes get nostalgic about.
In the land of search engines and social media platforms providing more context to the things they show, Google is now tweaking its search results for news articles.
When searching on desktop, users will find — in the News tab — a more prominent display of publishers’ names and specific cards for articles in a carousel, rather than straightforward headlines and links.
Over the next couple weeks we’re rolling out a redesigned News tab in Search on desktop. The refreshed design makes publisher names more prominent and organizes articles more clearly to help you find the news you need. Check it out pic.twitter.com/xa2aZfO4Qd
Over the past few years, New Jersey has been the outlier in getting — or even trying to get — a local government to pony up money for local journalism. Garden State-based civic info advocacy group Free Press convinced the state legislature to originally commit $5 million in its budget last summer:
The Civic Info bill, pushed by the advocacy group Free Press, devotes funds from the sale of two old public-television licenses to start a nonprofit news incubator called the New Jersey Civic Information Consortium; it’ll seek donations and grants to grow from there…
The consortium will use five of New Jersey’s universities — the College of New Jersey, Montclair State University, the New Jersey Institute of Technology, Rowan University, and Rutgers University — as collaborators and as infrastructure. The idea is that they can supply the sort of established, institutional resources and partnerships that startups or
A Knight Foundation survey of 1,660 18- to 34-year-olds, conducted by the University of Chicago’s NORC, finds that young adults are relatively active consumers of news — 88 percent of them access it at least once a week and 53 percent do so once a day — but they often don’t think that it reflects them. African Americans and Hispanics “say they see inaccuracies and irregularities in the coverage of their racial or ethnic communities,” and they — along with young adults who are white — think they’re often not covered accurately, even by their favorite media sources.
Young African Americans and Hispanics are also turning to ethnic media — with those “who say they regularly experience racial discrimination” more likely to seek out such sources than those who don’t say they regularly experience racial discrimination.
And young adults rely on their favorite media sources to help make decisions like which political candidates
When you read stories in The New York Times’ app, does you count that as reading a story online? What about news from Twitter? Is it only “online” news if you’re reading it from a computer? And, come to think of it, are the New York Times stories you read digitally really “online news” at all, or are they newspaper stories?
These are the kinds of questions that Pew grapples with when it formulates its surveys about Americans’ online news reading habits. In a Medium post, Pew research associate Elisa Shearerlaid out some of the ways that the organization has changed the wording of its questions over the past 20 years (it started asking about online news in the mid-1990s).
“The internet is a relatively new source of news for Americans, compared to, say, TV or radio,” she writes. “As a result, it can be hard to design surveys Continue reading "Is “news on the internet” the same as “news on your phone”? Here’s how Pew asks"
Who says bipartisanship is dead?
Today’s lions-laying-down-with-lambs moment is a cross-ideological alliance that has the Tucker Carlson-founded Daily Caller working with Mediaite, Raw Story, and others to attempt to wrestle advertising dollars away from the usual suspects.
The Wall Street Journal’s Lukas I. Alpert had the story of a political news partnership:
The Atlantic’s briefing joins a number of other offerings from publishers. But while ownership of the devices is increasing — an estimated 65 million U.S. adults, around 23 percent of the population over 12, own one; 12 percent of U.S. adults said they used one in the past
YouTube has a post up on its official blog today entitled “Our ongoing work to tackle hate,” and “ongoing” is pretty earned there; as the post notes, YouTube “made more than 30 policy updates” in 2018. The world’s most popular video site has gotten (mostly deserved) blowback from all angles as more have come to realize the site’s power for algorithmic radicalization and its role as a community builder for all the wrong people.
Creating coherent systemwide rules around hate speech and related subjects is legitimately hard, but today’s update would seem to cut through the complexity of at least one share of it: No more Nazis. No more white supremacists. No more Sandy Hook truthers. No more Holocaust deniers.
Facebook is introducing more tools for users to kick in subscriptions for publishers, but it’s unclear how many subscriptions it will meaningfully drive.
The platform has hosted subscription and membership boot camps for publishers before, helping dozens of local news outlets refine their reader revenue strategies. But Facebook has still taken a hands-off approach to, you know, sharing revenue with content creators or members of the industry decimated by Facebook’s and other companies’ digital advertising. Now Facebook is giving the reins of subscriptions via its Instant Articles to publishers, and it won’t be taking the 30 percent cut it usually takes from a similar product for creators.
This new product, News Funding, has been in testing for the past 18 months with 40 publishers worldwide, including Tribune Publishing and India’s Business Standard, Mexico’s Animal Político, and paywall tech company Piano, according to Facebook’s announcement:
What news outlets don’t really have a trust problem with audiences?
Ethnic media — media outlets that serve specific cultural, racial, ethnic, religious, geographic, or language communities — are pillars in their communities, often rooted for decades and telling the stories of immigration and American life on their own terms. A new report from the Center for Cooperative Media examines the state of ethnic media in and around New Jersey (that definition of ethnic media is theirs), highlighting the work the state’s 119 outlets have already done in building strong ties with their audiences, and the work the outlets need to do to survive in the future.
Authors Sarah Stonbely and Anthony Advincula write:
In a sense, the story of ethnic media is the story of immigration. Historically, the sector was established by and for immigrants, and the sustainability of the sector has largely depended on the immigrants that it
In the United States, deaths caused by homicide and terrorism are extremely rare; the leading causes of death are heart disease and cancer. But you wouldn’t guess that by looking at mainstream news coverage, which devotes far more coverage to violent death than it does to death from disease. (And Americans believe crime rates are much higher than they actually are.)
This finding — which probably won’t surprise you — was explored this week in a post on Our World in Data. (Our World in Data is a collaboration between the University of Oxford and the nonprofit Global Change Data Lab.) Hannah Ritchie looked at 2018 research published to Github by Owen Shen, a student at the University of California, San Diego. For his project, Shen pulled data from four sources: The CDC’s WONDER database for public health data, Google Trends search volume, The Guardian’s
Many editorial and video employees at Vox Media are, at this hour, finishing up a walkout to protest their employer’s stance on a number of wage and other issues — including guaranteed annual raises, better severance, and revenue sharing on derivative works. (They’re represented by the Vox Media Union, which is an affiliate of Writers Guild of America, East.)
Excited to be walking out at 1pm today in solidarity with @vox_union
My demands include: * Raises that exceed the Fed's inflation target * Severance longer than management's proposed 2 (!) weeks * A great steering wheel that doesn't whiff out the window while i'm driving
— Dylan Matthews (@dylanmatt) May 29, 2019
Summer is fleeting, as is The New York Times’ summer newsletter, which is returning for its second year this week. It will run through Labor Day. In the intervening winter months, the Times surveyed readers and applied what they learned to the newsletter’s second summer — here are some of the changes they’re making:
As the U.S. media scrambles to do something different besides Youngstown, Ohio profiles ofworking classvoters, the misinformation machines are alive and well in our neighbors across the pond.
A study of tweets and Facebook posts related to the European parliamentary elections found that misinformation and “junk news” still flourished on Facebook but seemed to be tamped down on Twitter, researchers at the University of Oxford’s Computational Propaganda Project found. Anti-immigration and Islamophobic writing especially took off.
Nahema Marchal, Bence Kollanyi, Lisa-Maria Neudert, and Philip N. Howard collected half a million tweets from April 5 to April 20 that used European election-related hashtags. They examined 137,000 of them which contained a URL that went to one of 5,774 unique news sources and determined that less than four percent of the sources were what they call “junk news.”
(Their definition: “Junk
As resources (especially locally) in journalism recede, collaboration has emerged as a way to do more with more by sharing skills, networks, and other reporting tools for maximum impact. The third annual Collaborative Journalism Summit, organized by the Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair State University and hosted this year by WHYY in Philadelphia, is, well, a collaborative collaboration geek-out. (There may have been “Collaborate or die” stickers.)
A big theme this year was how collaboration can be wielded beyond newsrooms and communities where the overwhelming number of (white) journalists are comfortable engaging. When you are collaborating, who’s included and who’s left out?
Equity rather than equality is a value of collaboration says Jean from @resolvephilly — not every news outlet comes to the table with the same time and resources. We're all people. #collaborativej