This subsection of the Need to Know newsletter offers ideas and insights you’ll want to share and discuss.

If we want local news to survive in the 21st century, we need to think about what it means to be local and reconsider how local news is funded

Christopher Ali, an assistant professor of media studies at the University of Virginia and the author of “Media Localism: The Policies of Place,” argues that “if we are really serious about local media in the 21st century,” three things need to be considered and changed: First, Ali says “we need to have a more inclusive […]

The White House is upping the pace of news, testing journalists and news organizations

“This pace of covering this new president is unsustainable for the long haul,” says White House correspondent and American Urban Radio Networks’ Washington bureau chief April D. Ryan. Journalists are finding themselves covering stories late into the night and on weekends that aren’t supposed to be filled with news, Erik Wemple writes. Politico and NYT […]

Copy editors and grammar pros are finding Internet stardom

Copy editors are the new Internet stars, “a refreshing renaissance for a profession that is generally underappreciated and rarely noticed,” Thomas Vinciguerra writes. Editors such as the Baltimore Sun’s John E. McIntyre and The New Yorker’s Mary Norris have turned columns and blogs about grammar into a substantial online following. “I’ve had the good luck […]

How the online advertising industry fuels ‘fake news’

The U.K. Parliament’s inquiry into “fake news” asks, “Have changes in the selling and placing of advertising encouraged the growth of fake news, for example by making it profitable to use fake news to attract more hits to websites, and thus more income from advertisers?” That’s an important question, Damian Tambini argues, because its answer […]

Breaking down the different kinds of ‘fake news’ online

“Fake news” is an inherently unhelpful term, Claire Wardle writes, but many times, we don’t have a better term to use. Wardle breaks down the different forms of misinformation online — ranging from totally fabricated content to misleading information to satire and parody — and analyzes how this information is being disseminated. “If we’re going […]

‘I Ignored Trump News for a Week. Here’s What I Learned.’

Farhad Manjoo spent last week avoiding news about Trump, not to “stick my head in the sand” but to “learn about the modern news media by looking at how thoroughly Mr. Trump had subsumed it.” After finding it hard to find Trump-free news and coming across important stories that aren’t shared as widely, Manjoo asks […]

Tips for how President Trump can improve his media literacy

“With cries of ‘fake news’ coming from all sides, schools are stepping up — teaching media literacy to help students distinguish rumor from fact, hoax from reality” — and President Trump’s suggestion of a terrorist attack in Sweden shows he needs a crash course, too, Margaret Sullivan writes. Though these media literacy tips may be […]

Steve Buttry died of pancreatic cancer at age 62 on Sunday

Steve Buttry, who had been a journalist for more than 45 years, died Sunday at age 62 of pancreatic cancer.  “The least I can do, that any of us can do, is to live the best kind of life possible — the way Steve did. We take the meeting. We get on the flights (and […]

A Vermont newspaper couldn’t give itself away in an essay contest, but it still found a buyer

When its owner tried to give the paper away through an essay contest, The Hardwick Gazette couldn’t bring in enough entries. But the paper has still found a new buyer through the essay contest. Small and his wife, Kim, will officially become the Hardwick Gazette’s 11th owners on Friday. And while their background is in […]

A digital news reader’s bill of rights

“Journalists have long had the bad habit of holding readers in contempt. Maybe not an individual person, but certainly the audience as a whole,” Andrew Dunn writes. Dunn suggests a “bill of rights” for digital news readers, that puts the onus on news organizations to “treat our readers like the intelligent adults that they are.” […]