Talk About Local Blog

BBC Head of News acknowledges frankly that BBC…

James Harding came to the BBC from The Times.  So he isn’t as steeped in BBC-ism as other senior managers there and this gives him a helpful perspective.  I’ve seen him speak up at Salford and is, I think sincere in his efforts to change the way the BBC does things better to prepare it for the future.  James Harding has a nice report out (pdf – don’t under any circumstances try the awful bespoke snazzy website which manages to screw up even scrolling) on the future of news.  The...

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Statutory notices – a modern approach to alerting…

My colleague Sarah Hartley, writing on Prolific North  has uncovered the extent of government spending on advertising with a handful of local papers in some Northern cities – the so called statutory notices.  And CLG has at the same time published an interesting document on experimenting with changes to the statutory notices regime. It’s a topic we have been poking away at for a while here, in particular while working with Carnegie UK Trust and talking to the amazing MySociety about how a modern approach to data could help local...

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Mapping council expenditure on newspaper advertising

The issue of council spending on local newspaper advertising is about to get far more scrutiny – not least because the local government minister Eric Pickles is putting some focus onto it. At least some of the advertising purchased each year is for statutory notices – i.e. that important public information which the council is obliged to pay newspapers to disseminate such as planning applications and road changes. This has long been an topic that hyperlocal publishers, bloggers and civic activists have taken an interest in and when I reported...

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‘The future’s bright – the future’s local’ –…

The Carnegie Trust has today produced the report, The future’s bright – the future’s local, after studying the space and its opportunities while running the Neighbourhood News initiative in locations around the UK. Over the last two years, the Trust has been working with five local news organisations across as part of its project, which was set up to help develop innovative ways of producing local news with local organisations. The headline grabbing recommendation from the report today is that the government should widen existing financial interventions in the local...

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Local web use data – one in ten…

Handy round up from OFCOM of a range of internet statistics including local news One in ten say they use local community websites or apps at least weekly (7% in 2013) (page 50). Overall number of sites on Openly Local down, mainly due to Local People network dying slowly.  OFCOM also give good prominence to the excellent work of Andy Williams, Dave Harte et al throughout – Talk About Local has greatly enjoyed being part of the Creative Citizens research consortium. According to Ofcom’s news survey research, half (51%) of UK...

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