When it comes to news websites’ referral traffic, Google beats Facebook hands-down, with the search giant accounting for 40% compared to Facebook’s 26%. And yet hyperlocals, says publisher John Guinn, are making it harder for people to find them by not making the most of four simple SEO settings. In a guest post for OJB, John explains what those settings are — and how hyperlocal sites can use them to improve their SEO.Continue reading →
Using a combination of contact-led information and FOI requests, they uncovered the extent of the ambitions to dig deep into Scottish soil.
It was part of a steady flow of fracking stories from the Ferret team, ensuring those involved in making decisions were in no doubt of their responsibilities and recognised that every step would be scrutinised. Continue reading →
A council is warning it will reduce access to journalists if they aren’t regulated or don’t offer a right of reply. Andrew Brightwell asksif this marks a turning point for journalism’s relationship with local councils.
Two weeks ago, Thurrock Council approved its communications strategy, setting out how it will talk to residents and media.
Communications strategies are approved every day by councils without controversy, but Thurrock’s has provoked accusations that the authority wants to play ‘judge and jury’ to its coverage in the media, as YourThurrock first reported.
Most of the document — which you can read here (PDF) — is innocuous, but a section on media liaison says it will only consider journalists’ organisations as ‘media’ if they are signed up to a press or broadcast regulator. Continue reading →
Some time ago the BBC announced that it would be supporting local journalism by paying “local democracy reporters” (LDRs) to cover councils, courts and public services. The resulting stories would be supplied to local and hyperlocal news organisations.
Last month at an event in Birmingham more details were unveiled — and they didn’t make promising reading for hyperlocal publishers, as one of my students, Jane Haynes, reported: Continue reading →
Every so often a journalism student sends me questions for an assignment. I publish the answers here in the FAQ series. The latest set comes from a student in Australia writing for Upstart magazine at La Trobe University, and focuses on the local press.
1. Is the reader not worth as much on the internet?
Readers have always been worth different amounts in different contexts. It’s not that the reader is ‘not worth as much on the internet’, but that most readers on most websites are worth less. Continue reading →