Need to Know: September 20, 2022

+ Editor’s note: API is heading to Los Angeles for the 2022 ONA conference! Check out the sessions we’re participating in, connect with API staffers and follow along at @ampress. The rest of this week’s Need to Know newsletter will feature ONA updates and new installments of API’s guide to covering elections and democracy.


How to be different — and better — this election

To future Americans, this period in the history of our democracy will no doubt be seen as chaotic and fractured. But how will journalists be viewed — as catalysts to save democracy from implosion? Or as an industry that blamed market forces for its struggles and lamented the loss of newsprint and the scent of printer’s ink?

“The potential for this to be a breakthrough moment for the press is real,” NYU journalism professor Jay Rosen said in a July webinar. But to begin to do that, he added, the media industry must “ask really tough questions about how we’re going to do our journalism differently, given the threats to democracy that we see all around the country.” 

In this section of the American Press Institute’s guide to covering elections and democracy, we’ll look at some traditional ways of covering elections, and offer advice on more effective methods that could make a difference.

+ Did you miss the first installment of the election preparation report? Catch up here.