This Week in #Journalism: Free Press in Wisconsin


“A free press is not a privilege but an organic necessity in a great society.” – Walter Lippmann, an early 20th century American newspaper columnist and writer


“This week, a legislative committee approved a measure that would not only evict the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism from its offices on the University of Wisconsin campus, but also bar any university staff from working with the center.”  “The state legislature’s attack on the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism goes against a long history of public universities playing a role in informing the public”  “And so the state legislature’s affront on the center is more than a problem of academic freedom and student teaching. The center is one hopeful model of the journalistic institution of the future. But journalism needs to be independent, and the state legislature’s desire — and apparent ability — to reach into the university poses a particularly tricky problem for those who have felt hopeful about this model of doing journalism. It also violates a century of innovation and collaboration between journalism and the university, one that helped form the character of both institutions in this state.” (VIDEO)

Other stuffs

iOS 7: “Now when you choose to receive updates from a website, your breaking news, sports scores, auction alerts, and more appear as notifications — even when Safari isn’t running.”  “Is this the move that lets news organizations get the most out of pushing breaking news to users, on their phones and at their desks?”

“Sources of all kinds — including politicians — can become publishers and distribute their own information directly to an audience, without the need for a traditional media outlet. Is that a good thing or a bad thing for journalism?”  this allows journalists of all kinds — both professional and amateur or “citizen” journalists — to move up the value chain, as disruption expert Clay Christensen has described in his recent paper on the evolution of media. If we see the media as providing a service (or “jobs to be done,” as Christensen calls it) then part of that service used to be telling people what politicians said, or what the government wanted them to hear.”  “Now that this can be accomplished largely (or increasingly) without journalists, it should free up a whole class of reporters to do more value-added journalism that explains what things mean, or questions the statements of politicians.”

Would you click a “Respect” button more than a “Like” button?: “The finding that makes me the most afraid,” says Stroud, “is the people who are most likely to polarize and look at like-minded media and exhibit some of these behaviors that I don’t think are pro-democratic are those who are most politically knowledgeable.”  “From a business angle, respondents seeing a “Respect” button clicked on more comments in a comment section. From a democratic angle, respondents seeing a “Respect” button clicked on more comments from another political perspective in comparison to the “Recommend” or “Like” buttons.”  A WordPress plugin for a Respect button is available here.

“People didn’t know Foreign Policy was open for business on the web.”  “When we set up shop [Susan Glasser on Politico], we just found we had unlocked so much more conversation and discussion, and that people saw us immediately as a different kind of venue. It’s really snowballed from there.”


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