News startups and public broadcasters are becoming bigger players in local news when they partner
. That's according to a new report by Jan Schaffer, the executive director of American University's J-Lab.
In areas like New Orleans and Oregon, where big local newspapers have cut back on print frequency or staff, such alliances have been particularly fruitful, Schaffer writes. Oregon Public Broadcasting, for instance, used grants from the Knight Foundation and the Oregon Community Foundation to build a network of local news sources
OPB Director of Content Julia Silverman tells Schaffer she "views her mission as not just focusing on the state's metro papers, but also the smaller newspapers who are not AP members, but may have a great story 'but it doesn't travel.' "
And in San Diego, she reports, inewsource.org has "embedded" in the KPBS Public Broadcasting newsroom, leading to a series of scoops
To that end, the two news outlets broke a major report signaling deficiencies in whooping cough vaccine amid a pertussis epidemic. They created a searchable online database to let the public learn whether they are paying an additional California real estate tax imposed on property owners in certain development districts. And they revealed the local newspaper’s substantial political and financial ties to local politicians in the November 2012 election. (more...)