Need to Know: May 27, 2022

TOP NEWS THIS WEEK

In the wake of the horrific shooting in Uvalde, a familiar news cycle has begun. The shootings “follow a numbing script” that “feels like a grotesque deja vu”; the satirical newspaper The Onion posted 21 stories with the same headline — “‘No Way to Prevent This,’ Says Only Nation Where This Regularly Happens” — from 21 separate incidents over the last eight years. In Texas, newspapers ran scathing editorials — the Houston Chronicle called Texas’s gun law “inept, irresponsible and dangerous,” while The Dallas Morning News called it a “a moral imperative” to enforce gun control restrictions. Some journalists are wondering if “sanitizing” mass shootings less and showing “more graphic footage would force the public, and political leaders, to fully confront the sickening reality of America’s gun violence epidemic.” (The Texas Tribune, The Washington Post, The Onion, Philadelphia Magazine, Vanity Fair) 

MOST POPULAR STORIES THIS WEEK

These are the stories that captured the most interest from Need to Know subscribers this week. 

Votebeat launches as a permanent newsroom. What started as a three-month ‘pop-up’ project will now cover local elections in all 50 states. (Axios) 

How the current wave of more inclusive leadership is changing newsrooms. This new group of leaders have prioritized diversity on television and in print. (The Hollywood Reporter)  

The news industry’s $1 billion question: Is Meta about to unfriend journalism? As governments around the world consider making tech companies pay more to news outlets, publishers worry that Meta may pull out of some of the partnerships. (Press Gazette) 

NEW FROM API

16 newsrooms are testing strategies to combat polarization and build trust (Medium, Trusting News)

Trusting News is launching two additional projects through our Pluralism Network. These projects will focus on how journalists can invest in listening and better reflect the complexity of their communities. Journalists from 16 newsrooms will be collaborating with the Trusting News staff and research team to test strategies in order to build on this knowledge before the midterm elections. The two projects are an anti-polarization checklist, which will help editors assess whether individual stories are reflecting their communities with complexity and fueling curiosity, and outreach to low-trust community members, which will identify segments of their community that typically have low trust in news and reach out to people in those communities every week. 

API is hiring a Vice President, Journalism Programs

The Vice President, Journalism Programs, has a direct role in setting organizational strategy, managing the staff in concert with the CEO/Executive Director and others on the executive team, and being a thought leader for API and its partners in cultural transformation and business sustainability. The successful candidate must be comfortable with change and be able to lead with authority. The candidate must have a deep knowledge of journalism and digital media. They must also be able to recognize the impact of systems on issues of equity, identify news industry needs, and articulate and support a vision for how API can collaborate with news organizations, philanthropy, and other nonprofits. This is a full-time position with a salary between $150,000 and $180,000, commensurate with skills and experience. To apply, email a resume and cover letter to jobs@pressinstitute.org. 

FOR THE WEEKEND

+ Collaboration: From ‘impossible stories’ to world-changing journalism (Medium, Center for Cooperative Media) 

+ This college ‘nerd’ investigates the Ukraine war from the digital front lines (Poynter) 

+ Forced into exile by Putin’s war, Russian journalists are rebuilding their lives in Riga (Reuters Institute) 

+ Big money media is older than you think