NOVEMBER 22, 2023

Come Together

The hands of five people on a wooden table

The Making the Media Podcast is being told that new approaches to journalism are required to engage with audiences, restore trust, and connect with communities turned off by the traditional news agenda.

That’s the view of a US-based journalist and academic who is the co-author of a report calling for the establishment of more community-centered journalism as a way of turning the tide against news avoidance.

Damian Radcliffe was one of the authors of the report, “Redefining News: A Manifesto for Community-Centered Journalism,” which calls for a radical new approach to story creation and agenda setting. It calls for far greater involvement with communities to understand their needs and tell their stories in ways in which re-establish the value which journalism can bring.

And in the latest episode of the podcast, he says it is critical to combat news avoidance, where people are turned off by the news agenda. He tells host, Craig Wilson, “People are massively fatigued by the sort of doom and gloom, ‘if it bleeds, it leads’ kind of approach that we still see across too much news media. They feel overwhelmed and exhausted by a lot of the kind of negativity of a lot of those stories. They don't necessarily feel that it's relevant or that it speaks to them. And I think sort of, certainly, post pandemic, people are much more conscious of their mental health and mental well-being and the detrimental effect that that kind of journalism can often have.”

Damian accepts that more work needs to be done to justify the financial model needed to make this approach work, but in the podcast, he highlights some fledgling examples where progress is being made. He also says that the lack of diversity within newsrooms remains a major issue.

“There is a huge diversity problem across the journalism industry in the US, as there is in many other parts of the parts of the world. You know, it is too white, too middle class, too college educated, not enough people who actually come from and have that kind of lived experience of the communities that they are reporting on. And that is a huge, huge challenge for journalists to understand the issues that really matter to those communities if they're not from them or they don't really understand the challenges that those communities are grappling with. And that's why we talk about the importance of listening and of collaboration and also just finding kind of new and fresh ways to be able to tell those stories.”

Find out more on the next episode of the Making the Media Podcast, available on all major podcast platforms on Friday, November 24.



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  • Craig Wilson headshot

    Craig Wilson is a newsroom specialist with over thirty years of experience in the broadcast industry. Craig has held various roles with Avid and is now the Global Media and Cloud Product Evangelist and host of the Making the Media podcast.

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