We’re not in Indiana and know nothing of its political climate or the workings of its state government. But it sounds too bad that a plan Republican Governor Mike Pence had for a state-run news service has been scrapped under ridicule as a “Pravda of the Plains”.
Practically anybody knows that journalism’s becoming stressed as newspapers and other news outlets become crimped for support. Does that mean that information on state government has ceased to exist because the newspapers aren’t scurrying as of yore to report it? Of course not.
Thus Governor Pence’s notion of a “Just IN” state-run website that would have offered news of state government as provided by agency press secretaries sounded, to us, inspired, not insidious. It was to be led by a former Indianapolis Star reporter as its “managing editor”.
State agencies posting to the site would have learned pretty quickly that they’d best be upfront and accurate with information being offered there. For the Star and other beady-eyed editorial bodies continue to exist, if in possibly depleted form (not to mention the political opposition).
So it’s back to press conferences, news releases and media-sanctioned reporting techniques now that the envisioned Indiana “tip sheet,” or site, for the public has been scrapped. Too bad, we say.
Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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