November 3, 2009

Save journalism? Or save democracy?

Bill Mitchell of Poynter shares some of the conversation from last month's Community Conversation in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in Four things people miss about newspapers and what can be done about it

You've heard some of the people and conversations before. Mitchell sums it up:
"Much of the discussion involved the role a newspaper plays in facilitating in-person discussion -- in homes as well as broader communities -- in ways that online news might not. Other gaps mentioned by the group included newspaper-as-common-document for the community, the story-telling form of a newspaper article and a popular re-use of newspaper delivery bags."
Interesting conversation about what happens when newspapers stop "creating the space journalism occupies" and its effect on narrative commitments. Will it jar as black-and-white movies do for some teens?

I've been wrestling with journalism and democracy, so the comeback to's We're here to save journalism added another round. Do we need journalism to save democracy?

You can read an earlier update on the forum or look at the post to get an idea of what was to happen.


  1. I'm missing the newspaper delivery bags aspect of it quite a bit, and I'm also missing having something big and printed to read while I'm out for a cup of coffee or a sandwich.

    The one day that Ann Arbor has a bumper crop of newspapers is Thursday, when you can get the Metro Times, the Washtenaw Co Legal News, the Michigan Daily, the Detroit News, the Detroit Free Press, and all to read at once. Other days, not so much.

  2. What a shame that so many publish on the same day.

    I've found it surprisingly easy to fall out of the newspaper habit, though I do miss the daily diet of cartoons for my mashup cards. Guess digital greetings will replace the paper ones that I rarely mailed on time.

    Do what did you use the delivery bags for?