Media Monday Edmonton: Update #11

Here is my latest update on local media stuff:

Edmonton Bulletin
Visited Fort Edmonton Park on the weekend, and of course I had to stop by the Edmonton Bulletin!

Edmonton Bulletin

You can follow Edmonton media news on Twitter using the hashtag #yegmedia. For a great overview of the global media landscape, check out Mediagazer.

So, what have I missed? What’s new and interesting in the world of Edmonton media? Let me know!

Media Monday Edmonton: Introducing YegNews.com

After many months of preparation and hard work, a new online newspaper called YegNews.com is set to launch tomorrow, providing Edmontonians with a new option for local news. Alain Saffel, a former journalist and active member of the local social media scene, and Scott McKeen, former columnist for the Edmonton Journal, are the duo behind the new site, and about a month ago they sat down with me to talk about the new project.

“We want to increase the amount of local reporting,” Scott told me. Both men firmly believe that good journalism is important to communities, so increasing the amount of reporting that takes place in Edmonton is a key goal for the new site. While the focus initially will be on Edmonton, the hope is that the site will be regional in nature, covering the capital region. “We want to do a service for the city,” Scott said.

Noting that Scott used to work for the Journal and that a number of people have either left or been let go from that organization recently, I asked who would be writing for the site. “We want to create a community of journalists, to mentor and train them,” Scott replied. The hope is to attract a mix of experienced and fresh writers. Both Alain and Scott will be contributing regularly to the site, and there are at least nine other people ready to contribute content including Jenn Parks (formerly with the Edmonton Sun), Dave Clark (former editor of the Sherwood Park News), Sarah Hoyles (formerly of CBC), and John Korobanik (formerly with the Edmonton Journal). While the writing style will be “accessible”, it won’t be constrained within some of the boxes of the mainstream. “We’ll focus on print and photos, but we we really want to stress creativity in the styles of presentation,” Alain said, suggesting lists, infographics, and other visual elements will be common. Contributors will be encouraged to learn from one another.

Initial topics that will be covered on YegNews.com include City Hall, local business, and technology, areas that Alain and Scott feel are underserved at the moment. “Technology is what’s going to sustain Alberta over the long-term, and I haven’t seen much coverage of it in the three years I’ve been here,” Alain said. Some crime issues will be covered in columns, but it likely won’t be a focus. There will also be a certain amount of service journalism, perhaps making use of open data provided by the City. “People want to know when their sidewalk is going to be fixed,” Scott told me. While the site won’t be making use of any wire stories, Alain said they would consider using local blogs to augment original content, as long as they are Edmonton-related.

The project has been self-funded thus far. “It’s cheaper than ever to start something,” Alain said. They’re using WordPress to power the new site, and will be making use of Flickr, YouTube, and other free/inexpensive services to host multimedia. Given the small budget, social media will be a key focus for driving interest in and traffic to the site. “There are lots of people on Facebook in Edmonton, so we’re going to try to reach people that way,” Alain said. Readers will be encouraged to participate by submitting tips and story ideas, and the site will feature comments. “We want the comments to rise above,” Alain told me, saying they would be enforcing some accountability. A longer-term ambition is to have an ombudsman for the site.

The revenue model is for the site to be supported by advertising. “This is going to pay the bills,” Scott told me, noting that both he and Alain are committed to making the project work. While the site will feature some Google ads, the goal is to have mostly local advertising. “We want the living local ethic to be a driving philosophy,” Scott said. “There’s a lot of benefits to spending your money at local independents.” Contributors are volunteering initially, but as soon as it is financially possible, they’ll will be part of a profit sharing program. “We want to reinvest the earnings back into journalism,” Alain said.

YegNews.com is an ambitious project. The message on their splash page right now reads: “Edmonton’s online newspaper providing Edmontonians with original, interesting & informative breaking news, politics, opinions & more.”  It’s exactly the kind of experimentation I’d like to see more of. West Edmonton Local is still going strong and I think it has shown that there’s room for more local voices and reporting, at least at the hyperlocal level. And GIG CITY seems to be doing okay focused on arts and entertainment. It’ll be interesting to see how YegNews.com fares with a wider focus.

Congratulations to Alain and Scott on making it this far! I can’t wait to check out the site tomorrow and I look forward to seeing YegNews.com evolve over time.

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #10

Here is my latest update on local media stuff:

Media
Global Edmonton’s Linda Nguyen interviews Slutwalk organizer Kasia Gawlak. Photo by Darren Kirby.

You can follow Edmonton media news on Twitter using the hashtag #yegmedia. For a great overview of the global media landscape, check out Mediagazer.

So, what have I missed? What’s new and interesting in the world of Edmonton media? Let me know!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #9

Here is my latest update on local media stuff:

Merged Weeklies

So, what have I missed? What’s new and interesting in the world of Edmonton media? Let me know!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #8

Here is my latest update on local media stuff:

“As a host, you are a leader on the unit and will participate in story meetings which means keeping up on all political, social, economic and cultural developments relevant to our city. Community outreach is critical to the success of the show so you will participate in local events or station initiatives as a master of ceremonies or as a CBC  ambassador.”

“The media attention surrounding my case was so extensive, so blatant and so overtly sensationalized that it is unreasonable to expect any unsequestered jury to have remained uninfluenced by it.”

You can follow Edmonton media news on Twitter using the hashtag #yegmedia. For a great overview of the global media landscape, check out Mediagazer.

So, what have I missed? What’s new and interesting in the world of Edmonton media? Let me know!

UPDATE: This story was posted late tonight: VUE and SEE are set to merge! Apparently Bob Doull has purchased both and says merging the two into one “would be the logical thing to do.” Thanks to Jeff for the link. The story is at new Edmonton entertainment blog Gig City. Check it out!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #7

Here is my latest update on local media stuff:


Goodbye cake for Lynda Steele!

  • The Edmonton Journal has launched its new blogs page. The new release is significant for two reasons: Journal blogs are now running WordPress, and the page now links out to non-Journal blogs (such as this one). It’s a step in the right direction. For some fun, take a look at the source for the new WordPress blogs. It contains comments like “really not happy about this” and “Copyright Postmedia 1994”. Also: I’m not sure if this worked before, but the domain blogs.edmontonjournal.com now takes you to the new page.

You can follow Edmonton media news on Twitter using the hashtag #yegmedia. For a great overview of the global media landscape, check out Mediagazer.

So, what have I missed? What’s new and interesting in the world of Edmonton media? Let me know!

UPDATE: Karen Unland, editor of edmontonjournal.com, has announced she is leaving the organization.

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #6

Here is my latest update on local media stuff:

  • The same newsletter includes the latest NADbank data, which shows that 513,200 people read the Journal every week (includes both paper and online).
  • Intercamp, the student newspaper at Grant MacEwan University, is no more. It has been renamed The Griff, and will launch in September to coincide with MacEwan’s 40th anniversary.

The end has come for intercamp

You can follow Edmonton media news on Twitter using the hashtag #yegmedia. For a great overview of the global media landscape, check out Mediagazer.

So, what have I missed? What’s new and interesting in the world of Edmonton media? Let me know!

UPDATE: The Edmonton Sun tweeted tonight about their new site redesign. It looks kind of like Flipboard, on a web page. Definitely not your typical newspaper website! Check it out, and then let them know what you think.

Media Monday Edmonton: Results of the Twitchell Coverage Survey

In last week’s update, I included a survey on the media’s coverage of the Mark Twitchell trial. As of this morning a total of 73 responses were recorded. Here are the results:

It’s the reasons why people are or are not paying attention that I was really interested in, however:

Clearly there’s a difference between paying attention and wanting to pay attention. The good news for the media is that no respondents said the coverage was of low quality, and only one suggested it wasn’t being delivered appropriately.

I know there are plenty of people out there who want to read about the trial. I am not one of those people!

A total of 17 respondents (23%) would describe themselves as a member of the media. Just 4 respondents (5%) did not identify themselves as residents in the Edmonton region.

Twitchell Tweets

I decided to look at Twitchell-related tweets from Edmontonians since March 1. It’s interesting to see the weekends so clearly defined:

Here are the top twenty Twitchell tweeters:

  1. edmontonsun
  2. ctvedmonton
  3. KaraokeFanatic
  4. BillFortierCTV
  5. SimonOstler
  6. bengelinas
  7. RyanTumilty
  8. stalbertgazette
  9. ETownMickey
  10. edmontonjournal
  11. GlobalEdmonton
  12. MacsTheWord
  13. iNews880
  14. EdmontonCourts
  15. metroedmonton
  16. Jasmine09
  17. lindork
  18. EdmJrnlCitydesk
  19. YEG_Shannon
  20. cbcedmonton

So who’s talking about Twitchell on Twitter? The media, as you can see. Those 20 users account for 69.8% of all local Twitchell-related tweets.

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #5

Here is my latest update on local media stuff:

Rick McConnell wrote an article in The Journal essentially defending coverage of the Mark Twitchell trial. I’m interested in the media’s coverage of the story, and I’m curious about what others think. I’ve created a quick survey to gather some feedback (it’s not meant to be scientific or anything):

var host = ((“https:” == document.location.protocol) ? “https://secure.” : “http://”);document.write(unescape(“%3Cscript src='” + host + “wufoo.com/scripts/embed/form.js’ type=’text/javascript’%3E%3C/script%3E”));
var m7x3s5 = new WufooForm();
m7x3s5.initialize({
‘userName’:’mastermaq’,
‘formHash’:’m7x3s5′,
‘autoResize’:true,
‘height’:’1005′});
m7x3s5.display();

If you have trouble with the above form, you can access it here. Thanks in advance!

You can follow Edmonton media news on Twitter using the hashtag #yegmedia. For a great overview of the global media landscape, check out Mediagazer.

So, what have I missed? What’s new and interesting in the world of Edmonton media? Let me know!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #4

I’ve decided to rename the “week in review” posts to simply “update” because I don’t do them every week! Here’s my latest update:

You can follow Edmonton media news on Twitter using the hashtag #yegmedia. For a great overview of the global media landscape, check out Mediagazer.

So, what have I missed? What’s new and interesting in the world of Edmonton media? Let me know!