As our faithful readers and members already know, I and my colleague Michelle Chen decided to join the PeoplesNetWorks Collective a little more than a week ago, a move that we (all of PNW) earnestly hope makes The NewStandard stronger and better than before. We already offered a brief preview of our upcoming (for lack of a better word) re-launch, and weâ€™ve discussed and decided on a number of other things for the near future that will hopefully draw our readership into the newsmaking and reporting process further.
One of those things seemed so simple at the time â€“ more blogging by the whole groupâ€“and the other day Brian made the perfectly applicable suggestion, a sort of "why I decided good wages and free time arenâ€™t for me right now," or something of the sort. Yet somehow, the very idea of blogging more seems so much harder now that I have more say over the future and direction of TNS. I mean, how much should we be saying here outside of the format of a news article?
Really, Iâ€™m wondering and would like to know what our readers think. While we shanâ€™t go down the pontificating path, it would be nice to know what you guys would like to see in this blog space. And conversations about our materials are always welcome.
Right now, we generally reserve the blog for discussing media coverage of our core issue areas and whatâ€™s going on with the collective and TNS. Oh, and Brian has, on a couple occasions (most noticeably here), stepped over the line, but hey, can you blame him?
Anyway, in thinking about putting down why I went and joined this project as a fully (well, 2/3 for now) vested member, Iâ€™m struck by one simple thingâ€“what the hell else would I be doing as worthwhile as building a populist sort of hard news organization with three others as (should be) committed as myself? And besides, who else would make the mistake of hiring someone with my portfolio as a reporter? Somehow I donâ€™t think articles about the effects of poverty, workplace safety and consumer rights are hot commodities these days. Certainly the AP or similar wire services wouldnâ€™t pick up my services as a "brief" (or nonbrief, as the others would have it) writer, nor would most "respectable" dailies give space to information refuting the popular wisdom that segregation is a problem of the past.
And forget about the "alt-weekly" genre; thereâ€™s only so much snark and entertainment suffocating the real news I can stand before tossing [insert your local weekly, â€™cause theyâ€™re all largely the same] across the room.
So please, feel free to talk to us through the comment space here. Weâ€™re looking for feedback as we prepare to rollout the new site design and implement new features (by the way, anyone know a good, not widely-known editorial cartoonist looking for another space to post their wares?). And thanks for bearing with me through this post as I work past my new-found jitters.