Nieman Lab: The Daily Digest

Higher ed and public radio are enmeshed. So what happens when the culture wars come?

With higher education at the crossroads of the culture war, public media is vulnerable to growing political interference over its operations. By Nikki Usher.

The view from here: Rethinking what local news can and should be

“Your newsroom should match the community. It’s the easiest thing to say, it’s very difficult to do.” By Connor Goodwin, ProPublica.

These competitors joined forces to allow readers to use a single login across their news sites

OneLog brings together some of the largest and most trusted Swiss media companies. Their single sign-on solution will reach 2 million active accounts in 2022 — representing one in four inhabitants in the country. By Sarah Scire.

Media consolidation and algorithms make Facebook a bad place for sharing local news, study finds

“There’s a lot of hesitancy about becoming overly reliant on companies that have their own interests, ultimately, and they’re not always aligned [with news companies’ interests].” By Shraddha Chakradhar.

Here’s why The Continent asked its readers if it should accept an advertising deal

“The readers of our publication can be trusted to weigh in thoughtfully and meaningfully on complex issues.” By Hanaa' Tameez.

Nobel Peace Prize for journalists serves as a reminder that the freedom of the press is under threat

“They are representative for all journalists, in a world in which democracy and freedom of the press face increasingly adverse conditions.” By Kathy Kiely.

Local news blues: The employees of small newspapers see a bleak future, this survey says

“Our readers are old, older, and oldest.” By Laura Hazard Owen.

Paying people to be more mindful of the truth is not a sure bet to accuracy, study finds

“Just one previous exposure is enough to make information seem more credible.” By Shraddha Chakradhar.
New report highlights how Black media outlets center and amplify issues of importance to Black communities
Axios launches paid memberships for its local newsletters
When Facebook went down this week, traffic to news sites went up
Slate / Justin Peters
Why hasn’t The New York Times made Ben Smith sell his BuzzFeed options yet? →
“A mere disclaimer mentioning the existence of his stock options in BuzzFeed is an insufficient reckoning both with the fact that Smith still holds them, almost two years after the Times announced his hiring, and that their fluctuating value might reasonably lead readers to think twice about whether to absolutely trust the premise and intent of his reporting on other media companies.”
Missouri Independent / Jason Hancock
Missouri governor labels reporter who found flaw in state website a “hacker” →
“On Tuesday, a reporter with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch alerted the state that Social Security numbers of school teachers and administrators were vulnerable to public exposure due to flaws on a website maintained by Missouri’s department of education.”
The Atlantic / Emma Green
“You guys are writing comedy that doesn’t hate me”: Inside The Babylon Bee, a satirical site popular with right-wingers and disaffected Christians →
“Q: Who is the audience for The Babylon Bee? A: I’m always amazed when we get emails from overseas missionaries who are underground and can’t reveal where they are, being like, ‘Hey, you guys are keeping us sane.’ The Boomers love us. We got the Boomer-humor market locked down.”
New York Times / Karen Weise and Paul Mozur
LinkedIn will shut down service in China →
The networking site had previously agreed to censor posts made by its millions of Chinese users and has censored U.S. journalists in the past, suggesting they remove “politically sensitive content” to have their profiles fully reinstated. Now they’re pulling back from the country, citing “a significantly more challenging operating environment and greater compliance requirements.”
WAN-IFRA / Elizabeth Shilpa
How Spain’s El Confidencial gained 30,000 subscribers in a year →
“Targeting the best users with the correct price of the correct properties is fundamental for us to increase the number of subscribers,” Juan Jurado, Data Scientist at El Confidencial, said.
The New York Times / Marc Tracy
Maryland hotel magnate Stewart Bainum, Jr. is planning a publication to rival The Baltimore Sun →
“The planned digital news outlet, The Baltimore Banner, will have an annual operating budget of $15 million, and Mr. Bainum is now looking to hire an editor in chief and a staff of 50 journalists, the newspaper consultant Imtiaz Patel, an adviser to Mr. Bainum, said on Thursday.”
Rest of World / Andrew Deck
Behind SmartNews, the $2 billion unicorn trying to fix the news algorithm →
“SmartNews launched in English in the U.S. in 2014, and the app is now available in more than 150 countries. The company styles itself as diverging from the received wisdom in American media: that polarization sells. SmartNews has developed a news-recommendation algorithm that promises to serve its readers a personalized, but politically balanced range of stories.”
Wired / Mar Hicks
Facebook’s fall from grace looks a lot like Ford’s →
“To understand how Facebook will likely land after its fall from grace we need to look at the striking similarities between earlier regulatory battles and what is going on now. Before there was Big Tech, there were the Big Three: Ford, Chrysler, and General Motors—and an infamous memo that cemented in the collective consciousness of the American public that strong regulation was a necessity, not a nicety. Though it may be difficult to see through the haze of history, there are important parallels between Big Tech today and the US auto industry in the mid-20th century, which also once seemed to be an unstoppable juggernaut.”
HuffPost / Yessenia Funes
Bianca Graulau is documenting Puerto Rico’s disappearing beaches on TikTok →
“That’s what makes Graulau’s storytelling so special: She connects. She dares to do what few other journalists would on camera: She gets personal. ‘It allows me to communicate with my viewers and followers as a fellow human,’ Graulau said, ‘as a fellow Puerto Rican who’s going through the same issues as the rest of the population here.'”
Via Fuego: What the future-of-news crowd is talking about today around the web
U.S. Extradites Key Financial Ally of Venezuela’s President
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BOGOTÁ, Colombia - A top ally of Venezuela's authoritarian government has been extradited to the United States, one of his lawyers said Saturday, where he will face money laundering charges in Florida. The extradition of Alex Saab, a Colombian businessman and financial fixer for President Nicolás Maduro of Venezuela, represents a victory for the U.S.
PressThink: Special to PressThink: Interview With Herbert Gans, America’s Senior Sociologist of News
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Sociologist Herbert J. Gans wrote the scholarly classic, Deciding What's News, in 1979. In it, he calls for news from multiple perspectives, which means "reporting all ideas that could resolve issues and help problems, even if the ideas come from ideologically small groups." That would change coverage of politics, the economy, war, and everyday life.
American Missionaries Kidnapped in Haiti, Officials Say
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As many as 17 Christian missionaries from the United States and their family members, including women and children, were kidnapped on Saturday by a gang in Port-au-Prince as they were leaving an orphanage, according to Haitian security officials.
20 background details you definitely missed on ‘The Office’
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Even the biggest superfans of The Office have yet to discover all the delightful Easter eggs hiding in plain sight in the workplace comedy. Trust me - I consider myself a foremost expert on all things The Office - but every week I'm still learning intricate new details about the show.
Adele talks about the meaning behind ‘Easy on Me’ as if she’s having a cuppa in your kitchen
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Adele, the internet's bezzie mate, is back! And if you weren't heartbroken or wallowing in your feelings before " Easy On Me" came out, you'll likely be dumping someone, anyone, before the day is out just to feel something. What is the song about though?
Fuego is our heat-seeking Twitter bot, tracking the stories the future-of-journalism crowd is talking about most. Usually those are about journalism and technology, although sometimes they get distracted by politics, sports, or GIFs. Check out Fuego on the web to get up-to-the-minute news.