508 #88: First Snow

posted by Mike on October 16th, 2009

508 is a show about Worcester. This week’s panel is Brendan Melican and Drew Wilson.

This week, we are snowed upon.

Audio: mp3 link, other formats, feed

Video: Downloads and other formats

508 contact info

Fresh injera is available at Fresh Farm Deli, 560 Lincoln St, Worcester, Massachusetts.

Big Y is carrying conspicuous amounts of locally-sourced food.

The McDonald’s vegan “feed-in” was popular; there’s a bike ride to a local farm sanctuary picnic this weekend.

We revisit the idea of local bloggers filling a small part of the gap the T&G is leaving. At some point Mike will try to define numbers for this thing.

Brendan talks about the recent City Council and School Committee debates and explains why you might want to attend one.

Mike shares how much time and money it takes to do a weekly show on WCCA TV13–not that much!

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One Comment Leave a comment.

  1. On October 19, 2009 at 10:25 Nicole said:

    I’d like to hear more about citizen journalism/blogs taking over part of the responsibility of reporting things like City Council meetings, etc.

    I think that there are important benefits to having professional journalists and a newspaper with some money behind it. When you think about public officials withholding public information from the public, the Telegram has had to sue the city for information. What if we didn’t have a daily paper? Would bloggers be able to sue the city (and have the money to do so)? What if bloggers wanted to do some research and the police department wanted to charge them $40 an hour so that a sergeant could make photocopies? Could they afford it?

    I think that blogging is great, and I think that there are a lot of topics that bloggers can delve into and bring to light that the average reporter would not get to, because of time or space or editorial constraints, or simply because that blogger has a perspective that the reporter doesn’t. I think that blogging and citizen journalism can supplement or amplify, but not ultimately replace, professional journalism. (I don’t think professional editing and proofreading should be underestimated, as I think that’s where a lack of resources can show almost immediately in any journalism outfit…)

    To put it another way: does the presence of a really nice Salvation Army bookstore replace the bookbuying vacuum that has been left on my side of the city since the Another Story used bookstore closed? Isn’t the bookbuying process improved by having a professional bookseller who organizes and sorts books, decides what’s worth selling, and is available to give advice? That’s not to say that I don’t appreciate buying books at the Salvation Army – I do, every week. But having a professionally run bookstore is nice too. So, it’s nice to have professional journalists and equally good to have bloggers bringing a different perspective to the same news items (or news items overlooked).

    But just as there are people who would never shop for books in a thrift store, there are plenty of people who will not get their news from blogs. Part of it is the reliability factor, but there are also people who want their news presented to them in an easy-to-digest format (not having to go to 10 blogs a day for local news) or for whom the technological barriers are too high. And I think that those are the people who get left out of the bloggers-as-citizen-journalists equation.

    I also think that Brendan – was it last week or the week before? – found a new respect for the Telegram from watching a documentary about the family that ran the LA Times. While I think that the Telegram does do a decent job at giving the people a voice in the Letters section, I don’t agree that it’s really brining issues to the forefront, or that it was when it was in its heyday. Why is voter turnout still so low? What could the paper of record do to improve that?

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