Local video finally gets momentum

“Consumers won’t want to go to three different places for local news in video, text, and audio forms.”

There have long been predictions about local news organizations embracing more video content. And there have been lots of disappointments. The infamous Facebook “pivot to video” — and the related havoc visited on newsrooms — springs to mind.

But as often happens, those failed initial experiments may have just been too early. Different times can present better opportunities, and I think we’re entering such a moment for local video.

The fundamental arguments remain. Local linear TV, with all of its advertising, is being seriously challenged by cable cord-cutting. People love to consume online video and local publishers have a lot of important stories to tell. And necessity has pushed many publishers to become more experimental with their digital products. Much broader delivery of video news is a natural and obvious growth opportunity. (There are similar opportunities in podcasting and other audio forms, although the terrestrial radio market will follow a different trajectory than local TV.)

But we don’t know yet what the very best video formats will look like. It won’t be two people behind a desk and a weatherman in front of a map. It will be in forms native to the online environment. Newsday, as just one example, is trying some really innovative things with a wide variety of video products.

I really do believe that full embrace of video and audio — along with the whole range of text products, including newsletters — will drive a new age of growth for many local publishers. Consumers won’t want to go to three different places for local news in video, text, and audio forms. And even though local news publishing is very stressed at the moment, it’s actually the segment that is best positioned to develop fully integrated local news products that win.

David Chavern is president and CEO of News Media Alliance.

There have long been predictions about local news organizations embracing more video content. And there have been lots of disappointments. The infamous Facebook “pivot to video” — and the related havoc visited on newsrooms — springs to mind.

But as often happens, those failed initial experiments may have just been too early. Different times can present better opportunities, and I think we’re entering such a moment for local video.

The fundamental arguments remain. Local linear TV, with all of its advertising, is being seriously challenged by cable cord-cutting. People love to consume online video and local publishers have a lot of important stories to tell. And necessity has pushed many publishers to become more experimental with their digital products. Much broader delivery of video news is a natural and obvious growth opportunity. (There are similar opportunities in podcasting and other audio forms, although the terrestrial radio market will follow a different trajectory than local TV.)

But we don’t know yet what the very best video formats will look like. It won’t be two people behind a desk and a weatherman in front of a map. It will be in forms native to the online environment. Newsday, as just one example, is trying some really innovative things with a wide variety of video products.

I really do believe that full embrace of video and audio — along with the whole range of text products, including newsletters — will drive a new age of growth for many local publishers. Consumers won’t want to go to three different places for local news in video, text, and audio forms. And even though local news publishing is very stressed at the moment, it’s actually the segment that is best positioned to develop fully integrated local news products that win.

David Chavern is president and CEO of News Media Alliance.

Cory Haik   Be essential

Taylor Lorenz   Journalists will learn influencing isn’t easy

Francesca Tripodi   Don’t expect breaking up Google and Facebook to solve our information woes

Rachel Schallom   The rise of nonprofit journalism continues

Rodney Gibbs   Zooming beyond talking heads

Alyssa Zeisler   Holistic medicine for journalism

Jody Brannon   People won’t renew

Sumi Aggarwal   News literacy programs aren’t child’s play

Ståle Grut   Network analysis enters the journalism toolbox

james Wahutu   Journalists still wrongly think the U.S. is different

Rasmus Kleis Nielsen   Stop pretending publishers are a united front

Mandy Jenkins   You build trust by helping your readers

Zizi Papacharissi   The year we rebuild the infrastructure of truth

Burt Herman   Journalists build post-Facebook digital communities

Joanne McNeil   Newsrooms push back against Ivy League cronyism

Tshepo Tshabalala   Go niche

Jonas Kaiser   Toward a wehrhafte journalism

Kawandeep Virdee   Goodbye, doomscroll

Joshua Darr   Legislatures will tackle the local news crisis

Christoph Mergerson   Black Americans will demand more from journalism

Alicia Bell and Simon Galperin   Media reparations now

Julia Angwin   Show your (computational) work

Francesco Zaffarano   The year we ask the audience what it needs

José Zamora   Walking the talk on diversity

Marissa Evans   Putting community trauma into context

Linda Solomon Wood   Canada steps up for journalism

María Sánchez Díez   Traffic will plummet — and it’ll be ok

Sara M. Watson   Return of the RSS reader

Robert Hernandez   Data and shame

Nico Gendron   Ask your readers to help build your products

Delia Cai   Subscriptions start working for the middle

Jeremy Gilbert   Human-centered journalism

Anthony Nadler   Journalism struggles to find a new model of legitimacy

Nonny de la Pena   News reaches the third dimension

Steve Henn   Has independent podcasting peaked?

Brandy Zadrozny   Misinformation fatigue sets in

C.W. Anderson   Journalism changed under Trump — will it keep changing under Biden?

Hadjar Benmiloud   Get representative, or die trying

Sonali Prasad   Making disaster journalism that cuts through the noise

Catalina Albeanu   Publish less, listen more

Sarah Stonbely   Videoconferencing brings more geographic diversity

John Davidow   Reflect and repent

Jean Friedman-Rudovsky and Cassie Haynes   A shift from conversation to action

Kevin D. Grant   Parachute journalism goes away for good

Natalie Meade   Journalism enters rehab

Annie Rudd   Newsrooms grow less comfortable with the “view from above”

Ryan Kellett   The bundle gets bundled

Gonzalo del Peon   Collaborations expand from newsrooms to the business side

L. Gordon Crovitz   Common law will finally apply to the Internet

Ariane Bernard   Going solo is still only a path for the few

Sue Cross   A global consensus around the kind of news we need to save

Jacqué Palmer   The rise of the plain-text email newsletter

Tonya Mosley   True equity means ownership

Julia B. Chan and Kim Bui   Millennials are ready to run things

Imaeyen Ibanga   Journalism gets unmasked

Garance Franke-Ruta   Rebundling content, rebuilding connections

Ben Collins   We need to learn how to talk to (and about) accidental conspiracists

Rick Berke   Virtual events are here to stay

A.J. Bauer   The year of MAGAcal thinking

Alfred Hermida and Oscar Westlund   The virus ups data journalism’s game

Richard J. Tofel   Less on politics, more on how government works (or doesn’t)

Victor Pickard   The commercial era for local journalism is over

Megan McCarthy   Readers embrace a low-information diet

Ernie Smith   Entrepreneurship on rails

Joni Deutsch   Local arts and music make journalism more joyous

Ariel Zirulnick   Local newsrooms question their paywalls

Basile Simon   Graphics, unite

Colleen Shalby   The definition of good journalism shifts

Doris Truong   Indigenous issues get long-overdue mainstream coverage

Hossein Derakhshan   Mass personalization of truth

Charo Henríquez   A new path to leadership

Pia Frey   Building growth through tastemakers and their communities

Brian Moritz   The year sports journalism changes for good

Matt DeRienzo   Citizen truth brigades steer us back toward reality

Kate Myers   My son will join every Zoom call in our industry

Samantha Ragland   The year of journalists taking initiative

Tanya Cordrey   Declining trust forces publishers to claim (or disclaim) values

Astead W. Herndon   The Trump-sized window of the media caring about race closes again

Cherian George   Enter the lamb warriors

David Chavern   Local video finally gets momentum

Errin Haines   Let’s normalize women’s leadership

Jennifer Choi   What have we done for you lately?

Stefanie Murray and Anthony Advincula   Expect to see more translations and non-English content

Kristen Muller   Engaged journalism scales

Amara Aguilar   Journalism schools emphasize listening

Candis Callison   Calling it a crisis isn’t enough (if it ever was)

Laura E. Davis   The focus turns to newsroom leaders for lasting change

Mike Caulfield   2021’s misinformation will look a lot like 2020’s (and 2019’s, and…)

Mark Stenberg   The rise of the journalist-influencer

Jim Friedlich   A newspaper renaissance reached by stopping the presses

Janet Haven and Sam Hinds   Is this an AI newsroom?

Sarah Marshall   The year audiences need extra cheer

Jer Thorp   Fewer pixels, more cardboard

Loretta Chao   Open up the profession

Renée Kaplan   Falling in love with your subscription

Tamar Charney   Public radio has a midlife crisis

Mariano Blejman   It’s time to challenge autocompleted journalism

Bill Adair   The future of fact-checking is all about structured data

Jesse Holcomb   Genre erosion in nonprofit journalism

Matt Skibinski   Misinformation won’t stop unless we stop it

Nicholas Jackson   Blogging is back, but better

M. Scott Havens   Traditional pay TV will embrace the disruption

Nikki Usher   Don’t expect an antitrust dividend for the media

Chicas Poderosas   More voices mean better information

Shaydanay Urbani and Nancy Watzman   Local collaboration is key to slowing misinformation

David Skok   A pandemic-prompted wave of consolidation

Marcus Mabry   News orgs adapt to a post-Trump world (with Trump still in it)

Ashton Lattimore   Remote work helps level the playing field in an insular industry

Nabiha Syed   Newsrooms quit their toxic relationships

Marie Shanahan   Journalism schools stop perpetuating the status quo

Pablo Boczkowski   Audiences have revolted. Will newsrooms adapt?

Andrew Donohue   The rise of the democracy beat

Logan Jaffe   History as a reporting tool

Celeste Headlee   The rise of radical newsroom transparency

John Garrett   A surprisingly good year

Masuma Ahuja   We’ll remember how interconnected our world is

Mark S. Luckie   Newsrooms and streaming services get cozy

Ben Werdmuller   The web blooms again

Cory Bergman   The year after a thousand earthquakes

Ray Soto   The news gets spatial

Meredith D. Clark   The year journalism starts paying reparations

Anna Nirmala   Local news orgs grasp the urgency of community roots

Moreno Cruz Osório   In Brazil, a push for pluralism

Don Day   Business first, journalism second

Gabe Schneider   Another year of empty promises on diversity

Tim Carmody   Spotify will make big waves in video

Patrick Butler   Covid-19 reporting has prepared us for cross-border collaboration

Whitney Phillips   Facts are an insufficient response to falsehoods

Jennifer Brandel   A sneak peak at power mapping, 2073’s top innovation

Edward Roussel   Tech companies get aggressive in local

Parker Molloy   The press will risk elevating a Shadow President Trump

Heidi Tworek   A year of news mocktails

Kerri Hoffman   Protecting podcasting’s open ecosystem

Nisha Chittal   The year we stop pivoting

John Saroff   Covid sparks the growth of independent local news sites

An Xiao Mina   2020 isn’t a black swan — it’s a yellow canary

Benjamin Toff   Beltway reporting gets normal again, for better and for worse

Sam Ford   We’ll find better ways to archive our work

Rachel Glickhouse   Journalists will be kinder to each other — and to themselves

Chase Davis   The year we look beyond The Story

Bo Hee Kim   Newsrooms create an intentional and collaborative culture

Andrew Ramsammy   Stop being polite and start getting real

Michael W. Wagner   Fractured democracy, fractured journalism

Zainab Khan   From understanding to feeling

Rishad Patel   From direct-to-consumer to direct-to-believers

Aaron Foley   Diversity gains haven’t shown up in local news

Mike Ananny   Toward better tech journalism

John Ketchum   More journalists of color become newsroom founders

Juleyka Lantigua-Williams   The download, podcasting’s metric king, gets dethroned

Danielle C. Belton   A decimated media rededicates itself to truth

Jessica Clark   News becomes plural

Eric Nuzum   Podcasting dodged a bullet in 2020, but 2021 will be harder

Raney Aronson-Rath   To get past information divides, we need to understand them first

Beena Raghavendran   Journalism gets fused with art

Cindy Royal   J-school grads maintain their optimism and adaptability

Tauhid Chappell and Mike Rispoli   Defund the crime beat

Talmon Joseph Smith   The media rejects deficit hawkery