Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Let's Pick On The AJC! Installment #853

I've heard, time and time again at various press-related functions, the good folk from Cox Media Plantations say news coverage is all going hyper-local, so thus they are too. So let's take a look at just where they've not bothered to "go local" -- on a day when the AJC.com's top, above-the-fold story is about Paula Abdul's makeup. (It was there early this morning, trust me.) Or when they do go hyper-local, it's semi-pointless. Hell, they can't even do "southern."

1.) The NYT had a cover story yesterday about a very dangerous home improvement product that lingered on the shelves of Atlanta-based Home Depot. Not only was the product, Stand 'N Seal, sold in Home Depot stores long after the product was recalled, the company that manufactures the hyper-dubious ingredient in the bathroom sealer product is based in... you got it... Georgia. But we get... Paula Abdul's pimple coverage instead.

2.) When churches throughout Atlanta had their annual pet blessing services to mark the Feast of St. Francis Assisi (historic pet-lover), and a delightful, heartwarming photo-op any 'ole time and place, the AJC runs a wire-service picture of a Golden Retriever in a church in San Francisco. Who needs to get out of the house and down the road a piece for a dog sitting in any church pew along Peachtree Road? Especially when Buckhead has more Golden Retrievers per household than any other place on the planet.

3.) Possibly the most head-scratching omission though is the failure of the AJC, a paper that helped shaped American history by its coverage of all-things-civil-rights, to send one of their own to Jena, LA to cover the civil rights march that happened there on September 20, not here. Rather, they relied on wire service reports the day of the march, choosing original reporting only for... the hyper-local perspective! Too bad that in this case the hyper-local was never where the heart of that story lay. How much can a Motel 6 in Louisisana possibly impact the bottom line?

Local v-blogger Amani Channel did bother to cover Jena, LA though. On assignment for HDNews. Twice. Here's just one of his many fascinating, personal, indie packages from the scene for his blog, MyUrbanReport, proving once again that blogs are now the best place to get your local, in-depth news coverage and analysis. Need more on the Grady crisis? Forget Cox Plantations; try Grift's crib.

NOTE: Once again I find that the best way to work your way through a social media-induced funk is to blog your way out. Confounding medium, eh?

1 comment:

Michael Goetz said...

I have to agree with you here 100%. It's not just the AJC though. All of the news outlets are doing similiar disservice to local news.

At this point, my news comes from 50% Atlanta-area blogs and 50% MSM.