Need to Know: November 11, 2022


By Wednesday morning, a media narrative about Tuesday’s midterm elections had emerged — it was a good night for Democrats, and a bad one for the Republicans, particularly Donald Trump. TV viewership numbers were down from 2018, but public radio stations, with help from API grants, expanded their community’s election resources. Experts who study misinformation said that attempts to cast doubt on the veracity of the election mostly failed. (The Associated Press, Axios, Current, The New York Times) 


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

The News Movement: Creating a social-first outlet with a firm focus on young audiences. The news platform, which just launched in the U.S., got more than a million views on TikTok with a video about where Ukraine is on a map. (Reuters Institute)

Chicago Sun-Times union blasts new owner. They accuse Chicago Public Media of union-busting by trying to eliminate the right of newspaper employees to stand with their WBEZ coworkers in a strike. (Axios)  

Focus on value instead of reach – ideas for metrics to use in your newsroom. Focusing on more specific numbers like lifetime volume rate or the change of an individual’s financial contribution over time can be more useful than traditional metrics. (The Fix)  


Better News: Arizona Daily Star flips the narrative with solutions journalism beat (It’s All Journalism podcast)

Media critics often fault the news industry for only covering bad news. While William Randolph Hearst may have coined the concept “If it bleeds, it leads,” that sentiment is not shared by those journalists working hard to make the community they’re covering a better place for their audience to live.

Case in point, the Arizona Daily Star recently flipped the narrative and added solutions-oriented reporting to its coverage. Rather than reporting on the problems of the community, the Daily Star’s solutions reporter Caitlin Schmidt is writing about how people are trying to fix those problems.

Caitlin and Editor Jill Jorden Spitz recently wrote a case study for Better News about the Star’s solutions-oriented reporting. Caitlin joins Better News host Michael O’Connell to share the details. 


+ What climate justice means to journalists on the emergency’s front lines (Columbia Journalism Review) 

+ An unprecedented number of women journalists are now detained in Iran (Reporters Without Borders) 

+ The left edge of the possible: How The American Prospect became the magazine of the moment (Columbia Journalism Review)