Foundations of Community Journalism is the first and only book to focus on how to understand and conduct research in this ever-increasing field. With chapters written by established journalism scholars and teachers, this book provides students and researchers with an understanding of the multiple methods applied to the study of community journalism, such as historical, social-scientific, cultural/critical, and interdisciplinary approaches. It explains what community journalism is as a research concept and offers a range of different methods and theories that can be applied to community journalism research. Although there are numerous “how-to” community journalism manuals for students and newspaper editors, none focuses on how to conduct research into community journalism. The body of knowledge in Foundations of Community Journalism would take readers months, perhaps years, of independent work to gather, making this book a “must-have” volume and reference tool for anybody who is interested in the relationships between journalism and communities.
The Economics of Community Newspapers
All newspapers share certain economic realities. They must provide valuable services to the people in their markets, and they must make enough profit to stay in business. They face risks and uncertainties. But the economic factors faced by community newspapers differ from those faced by the large-circulation newspapers that seem to dominate people's ideas of what constitutes “real” journalism.
A journalism professor once told me that the difference between big-city newspapers and community newspapers is that when you work at a community newspaper, you drink coffee with your sources and readers. Community journalism is more intimate, and the relationship with community members often more resembles a familial than a professional relationship.
Community members demand that their newspapers deliver ...