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Public Broadcasting in the News

PBS Releases DEI Report for ‘21

PBS released its annual Diversity, Equity and Inclusion report, business wire services reported. The full report is available on the PBS website. 

Advancing DEI Goals Proving To Be Hard Work For Public Media

Current reporter Tyler Falk checks in on some public media organizations that in 2020 made commitments to improve diversity, equity and inclusion at their workplaces. Many staffers who became involved in DEI initiatives are finding progress to be slow and victories to be hard won. 

Four Alfred I. duPont Awards Go To PBS

PBS took home four Columbia University-Alfred I. duPont Awards for 2022, more than any other recipient. The Hollywood Reporter has the story. 

A Counter View on Chicago Public Media’s Tie-up with Print Daily

Politico’s senior media writer Jack Shafer calls it “the latest fad cure” in the ailing news business. Chicago Public Media’s acquisition of old-guard print daily, the Chicago Sun-Times, was hailed by other critics as a possible model for saving local news, but Shafer asks us to consider what will happen with the commercialist legacy of the tabloid.  

Opinion: Public Media Emphasizing the ‘History’ Part of BHM

Filmmaker Leslie Fields-Cruz of Black Public Media wrote that she and her BPM colleagues were pleased with the “abundance of quality Black history content that public broadcasters are airing this month.” She cited past PBS programming during Black History Month that showcased contemporary Black culture as opposed to historical perspectives.  

News Deserts

Do you live in a ‘news desert’? The University of North Carolina’s Hussman School of Journalism looks at the growing gaps in news coverage left by the closures of local newspapers around the country.

Nonprofit Newsrooms a Promising New Model for Local News, Writes Margaret Sullivan

Washington Post media columnist Margaret Sullivan writes that nonprofit newsrooms like the Texas Tribune, show promise as a prospective new model for struggling local news. 

Family-run Iowa Newspaper Spotlighted in PBS Doc About Local Journalism

A documentary about the struggles of local journalism – think newspapers that cover the daily news of a town like Storm Lake, Iowa (population: 10,000) – airs the week of Nov. 15 on PBS. The Storm Lake Times, the subject of the film, is the second smallest news organization ever to win a Pulitzer Prize. It fills a vital need in this rural community.  Poynter has a write-up on the project, as does The Houston Press

Nonprofit Newsrooms Increasingly Filling Local News Void

The latest Institute for Nonprofit News survey, known as the INN Index, found that a growing portion of nonprofit newsrooms are dedicated to local public affairs, Neiman Labs reported. 

When Texas Border Town Lost Its Only Paper, Local Start-up Filled Void

When the Southwestern border town of Del Rio, Texas, lost its only newspaper, a local man stepped in with an investment in print, turning his event-oriented website into a news outlet with a print edition. He’s helping fight back against the encroaching edges of a news desert.

...more on 'News Deserts' and what PBS can do about them (older coverage)

Against the growing phenomena of news deserts in the United States – areas where local news outlets have failed or have been gutted by the loss of ad revenue – PBS is being called upon to act. One suggested remedy is overhauling the way the Corporation for Public Broadcasting issues grants for public affairs programming, from a Washington, DC -based metric to spending decided by local news producers. ...