Thursday, June 29, 2017

One Source

One source to rule them all, one source to find them, one source to reach them all...

Wait, that's not quite where I meant to go. Let's try that again.

Where do you get your news? Local news, I mean. Newspaper? Television? Radio? Social Media? Web sites?

In the past 24 hours I have seen questions from people about local goings-on of which they had been completely unaware. And it felt to them as though these things had sprung out of nothingness.

When did this happen?
Was it done in secrecy?
Where would I have gone to know about this?

These were all things which, if you were "in the know", well, then, you knew.

  • What was the process for choosing the AAC for school redistricting?
  • How did the plan for a new courthouse get approved?
  • Where can I find a current list of events at the Chyrsyalis?
Those of us who use social media for local news have to work to make sure we are seeing important information on Facebook, as their algorithm doesn't always make it easy to keep up. A weekly newspaper isn't enough. We don't have a television station and I think HCC may have a radio station but I don't know how much they focus on Howard County/Columbia.

If there were a daily newspaper, would we all read it to stay informed? (Yes, I know that's not even remotely a possibility.) I feel as though local news is cut into so many different slices in the world of social media, and you have to go out and hunt for them yourself. And, if you aren't aware of something, you don't know to look for it.

Great. It's like the "Where's Waldo?" Of local news. Except we don't always know what Waldo looks like.

Is it even possible, in 2017, for Columbia/Howard County to have one central source for news? If it were possible, would we want it? Support it?

Getting local news here is like a scavenger hunt. But it's pretty much self-curated, so there are plenty of things you'll miss, even as a diligent hunter and gatherer. What do you think?

Is there a better way?

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