NPR To Be Saviour Of Journalism

Ok, so the title is a bit far-fetched yet there are some experiments going on in that sphere as public issues and accountability journalism is newspapers and the general mass media goes on the decline.

Steve Coll reported last week from the Informing Communities conference that:

“Vivian Schiller, the C.E.O. of National Public Radio, noted that as newspapers contract and the volume of professional reporting on powerful institutions shrinks concurrently, the losses are being felt most heavily on the two far ends of the geographical spectrum—very local government reporting, and foreign correspondence. To address the local piece, CPB, NPR, and Knight announced they are investing just under four million dollars on an experiment to send a dozen new public broadcasting reporters into local areas to report online and across media platforms about public issues and institutions.”

I think those of us who have been following the technological transformation of journalism have been wondering where help for coverage of these hyperlocal as well as macro issues would come from. It seems that those duties might soon fall to the ‘public broadcasting’ sphere. Coll’s short post made mentioned that the US spends about 6% of what Canadia does on public broadcasting and a little over 1% of what the UK does. It seems a few extra dollars could go a long way.