Community newspapers handling economic downturn better

This blogger says community newspapers shouldn’t be compared to debt-laden metro dailies.
“It is my impression that community newspapers have done a better job connecting to audiences and advertisers. As ambitious journalists climbed ladders, jumping to the next bigger paper (I did this, too), the reporters and editors who stayed developed an trust and social capital in the community that comes across in the journalism. The same goes for the advertising, which benefits from the absence of quarterly goal pressure felt by publicly traded companies.”

Ethics Personnel issues Social media

WSJ releases policy for journalists on social networks

The Wall Street Journal has released rules for professional conduct on social networks. The WSJ policy addresses an interesting area that many news organizations have been grappling with for a long time — what is considered appropriate conduct for journalists on new mediums like Twitter and Facebook? The first link is an Editor & Publisher story about the issue, which includes the policy. The second link is social-media blog Mashable’s commentary on the policy.

New media Online news Twitter

The Journalist’s Guide to Twitter

Leah Betancourt, the digital community manager at the Minneapolis Star Tribune shares some tips for journalists on how to use Twitter, the popular micro-blogging site.

Hyperlocal news

Good community journalism key to success of newspaper industry

Howard Owens writes that “hyperlocal” news, often-heralded as the savior of the news business, is really just community journalism — something big dailies have gotten away from lately

His description of good community journalism sounds a lot like what many small-town newspapers are doing, and have been doing for years. He writes:

“… there is something to be said for finding fervor and valor in cherishing your home town and the unique individuals that give it vitality.

“As journalists, we’ve gotten away from cherishing community — that isn’t objective enough — and it’s hurt not only democracy, but our business model.”


Using the Web’s newest addiction – Twitter – is easier than you think

Twitter‘s all the rage lately. The Chicago Tribune “Twitterized” its masthead this month, replacing execs’ names with their Twitter IDs, and Nielsen recently declared it among the Web’s fastest-growing “member community destinations.”

So what’s the big deal? And can it really help a community newspaper?

For a primer on Twitter, check out this USA Today story from last year (ignore the talk about the site’s failing infrastructure, that’s no longer an issue).

Obviously in 140 characters, one can’t do much storytelling, which means the site doesn’t really have many benefits when it comes to storytelling like many new media tools do.

Twitter can still be a great tool, however, when it comes to promoting your site’s content and connecting with your readers.

The best way to learn about Twitter, though, is to just try it. It takes less than a minute to sign up for an account. Check out some of the best newspaper feeds such as the Austin American-Statesman‘s @statesman.

We also have a guide from a few popular members of the Twitterverse at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (@startelegram) that you can download here. That’s courtesy of Eva Ayala (@fwstayala), Andrea Jares (@andreajares) and Kathy Vetter (@klvet).

There are also more links on the Twitter page in our New Media Tools database and I’ll be posting more soon about how to use free services to automate a Twitter feed.

And don’t forget to follow us at @tccj.

If you have any experience with Twitter (good or bad) or advice to share with other community journalists, post it below.