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Discussion on the future of local journalism presented by The Berkshire Edge

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By Monday, Mar 19, 2018 News

Berkshire Edge readers are invited to attend an important community conversation, presented by the Germantown (N.Y.) Library and The Berkshire Edge, on The Future of Local Journalism. This panel discussion among career journalists and educators will take place on Tuesday, March 20, 2018 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Columbia-Greene Community College in Hudson, N.Y. The specific location is the Saland Forum, Room 614, in the Professional Academic Center at Columbia-Greene Community College, 4400 NY-23, Hudson, N.Y.

Over the past two decades, many communities throughout the United States have endured the drastic decline in exclusive local news coverage. Printed newspapers once dedicated to conveying their communities’ civic and cultural proceedings have been either absorbed by larger regional and national news organizations or jettisoned altogether as unsustainable business models. The net result of this contraction of local news resources threatens to produce a citizenry uninformed about the communities in which they live. At the same time, online publications are innovating new models for delivering local news.

On March 20, Roger Connor, co-founder and producer of Hudson Valley News Network will host and moderate this very important discussion. Some topics will include:

  1. Emerging trends in local news coverage;
  2. The role and pitfalls of social media in the dissemination of community news;
  3. Hyper-local news operations as viable business models;
  4. The role of primary and secondary education in developing future local journalists and local news consumers;
  5. Separating local news from “Fake News” controversies;
  6. Is local journalism sustainable? In what model?
  7. Will the future source of local journalism be citizen or professional?
  8. How do we work with professionals AND nonprofessionals to get a comprehensive mix of voices?
  9. How do you determine what readers want and need to read?
  10. How should American journalists respond when the very notion of a legitimate free press is under assault by the government in power?
  11. If you don’t believe “main stream media, who do you believe and why?

Panelists have been selected to represent a wide array of journalism experience. Former editors and reporters from traditional print newspapers, who have witnessed first-hand the migration of newspapers from print-only community trusts to multi-media business models, will join with creators of on-line niche websites and blogs and with local educators. Panelists include Karrie Allen – Bard College at Simon’s Rock; Jimmy Buff – Radio Kingston; Enid Futterman – imby.com; Karen Katz – Germantown Central School; Debby Mayer – The Columbia Paper; Seth Rogovoy – The Rogovoy Report; David Scribner – The Berkshire Edge; and Chris Hewitt – Country Wisdom News.

The panel discussion will be followed by audience participation. Other area journalists, media professionals, students and news consumers will be urged to join in.

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