Useful insights for people advancing quality, innovative and sustainable journalism 04422c6b-7998-44f8-b7bb-e4aa0a7f23a5.png

Need to Know

Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Useful insights for people advancing quality, innovative and sustainable journalism


You might have heard . . .
The first newspaper strike of the digital age stretches into a new year (Nieman Lab)

. . . but did you know:
Punches have been thrown in the first U.S. newspaper strike in two decades (Nieman Lab) 
Employees at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette have been on strike since October, and over the weekend, a skirmish broke out at a newspaper production facility. The union claims that its members were picketing scab labor at the facility; the newspaper says that protesters were harassing contract workers. The fight was between two striking workers and a truck driver; each claims the other side instigated the attack. There were no arrests made. 
+ Related: BBC fails with late bid to halt staff strike after chaotic walkout over Gary Lineker’s suspension (Deadline)

Trust Tip: Explain how you handle a conflict of interest (Trusting News) 
Most journalists learn early on to avoid conflicts of interest at all costs. But as we know, sometimes these situations are unavoidable. A recent episode from NPR’s Life Kit, How to Make a Better To-Do List, includes a disclosure that one of the team’s reporters/producers had been longtime friends with the CEO of a company they were interviewing. But the disclosure goes a step further by clarifying why this person was chosen for an interview — other staffers had used the product and found it helpful. Remember, listeners will not assume journalists typically avoid interviewing friends or highlighting friends’ businesses. That’s the kind of thing that seems obvious to us but is not automatically known by the public.
API offers free Google Analytics 4 training for newsrooms
API’s Product Strategy team is here to ensure that your transition from Google Universal Analytics (GUA) to Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is successful and that you’re capturing the data that is most useful to your newsroom. The first workshop this Friday will focus on using Google Tag Manager, and the second workshop on March 24 will explain how to set up key events to focus on tracking subscribers, members and general visitors who make up your audiences. Sign up here.

How not to cover a bank run (The Atlantic) 
Covering instability at financial institutions, like the recent crisis at Silicon Valley Bank, is a delicate question for journalists. Financial journalists feel an obligation to report on a major news story, but worry about causing or contributing to a panic. Brian Stelter writes that while pundits and social media crowdsourcing may encourage a bank run, journalists have an obligation to focus on thorough fact-checking and careful reporting. “In a financial crisis, journalists should be the verification layer for consumers, helping their audience separate their fears from the facts by reporting what they actually know,” writes Stelter. “And as the panic passes, journalism becomes a crucial tool of accountability and reform.” 

How DW nails TikTok explaining German culture to its 350k Berlin Fresh's followers (Substack, Mapping Journalism) 
On TikTok, German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle has created the account Berlin Fresh, a news and lifestyle feed that explores what it means to be a young person living in Berlin. The English language videos are aimed at showing Berlin’s status as a cosmopolitan, modern city to a young, global audience. But the channel has also hosted serious content, such as a series on the Holocaust that earned millions of views. DW’s head of social media, Johanna Rüdiger, says that young people are “hungry for information” on TikTok

Electric cars are ditching AM radio — a critical safety tool (Axios) 
Manufacturers of electric cars are eliminating AM radio due to the frequencies’ inference with electric motors, and government officials are worried that drivers may miss important information about natural disasters and other emergencies without access to AM radio. Car manufacturers say that consumers now receive news information from other outlets, and that the government’s redundant system involving text messages and internet radio will suffice. But Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) argues that “broadcast AM radio is irreplaceable."

Fox News braces for more turbulence as second defamation lawsuit advances (The Guardian)
Fox News is still fighting the defamation lawsuit brought by Dominion Voting Systems, but another lawsuit from election technology company Smartmatic could be even more damaging to the network. Smartmatic claims that Fox made 100 false statements about the company after the 2020 presidential election, and that it has suffered multi-billion dollar losses as a result of Fox News’ misinformation. Smartmatic is suing Maria Bartiromo, Lou Dobbs and Rudy Giuliani in addition to the network and is seeking  $2.7 billion in damages. 
+ Related: Fox News fears competitors will steal its ‘journalistic processes’ (The Washington Post); How Murdoch runs Fox News, in his own (often terse) words (The New York Times); Fox News’ Howard Kurtz calls Dominion lawsuit a ‘major test of the First Amendment’ (The Hill) 
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