Weymouth explains Washington Post bureau closures: We want reporters on the streets

Last week The Washington Post announced that it would close all of its regional bureaus other than those in the state capitals of Annapolis, Md., and Richmond, Va. At the Knight-Batten Awards symposium on Wednesday, Publisher Katharine Weymouth answered a question about the decision:

We’re really not closing our bureaus, we’re closing down the literal office space, because … it doesn’t really matter where your office is. We don’t really want them [reporters] in the office, we want them out on the street talking to people. So our local coverage is as important to us as it has ever been. … but we thought we could do that smarter and better by having people in the street.

Weymouth also talked about citizen journalism and social media, including her belief that 9/11 would have been more traumatic if social media existed then. "Can you imagine how horrifying it would have been if we had tweets from the victims on the planes or in the offices, or if they had posted to their Facebook pages?" || Related: Would the Graham family sell The Washington Post if it continues to lose money? Don Graham says, "No. That is spelled n-o."

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    Jeff Sonderman

    Jeff Sonderman is the deputy director of the American Press Institute, helping to lead its use of research, tools, events, and strategic insights to advance and sustain journalism.


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