Robert Washburn

Robert Washburn

Professor of e-journalism Publisher of Consider This

Recent Posts

Local news media being ‘kneecapped’ by COVID-19

Photo: Pixabay Licence Local reporting is being kneecapped by pandemic-driven cuts to media outlets across B.C. at a time when community-specific, trustworthy reporting is vital to public health. A project to map the impacts of COVID-19 on Canadian media paints a bleak picture of communities in Canada hurtling towards […]
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Postmedia blamed for missing local coverage for years after announcing community newspapers closures

In Manitoba, Postmedia will close the Altona Red River Valley Echo, Carman Valley Leader, Interlake Spectator (Gimli), Morden Times, Selkirk Journal, Stonewall Argus & Teulon Times, Winkler Times, and the Prairie Farmer. (Erik White/CBC ) Lori Penner will miss the weekly calls she gets at Altona’s Red River Valley […]
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Layoffs, closures strike Manitoba community newspapers

The Free Press has shared COVID-19 stories free of charge because we believe everyone deserves access to trusted and critical information during the pandemic. While we stand by this decision, it has undoubtedly affected our bottom line. After nearly 150 years of reporting on our city, we don’t want […]
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Will Canada’s media survive the pandemic? Fifty papers have closed in just the last six weeks

What would happen if the town of Aylmer were to suddenly lose its weekly newspaper? “I think the politicians would be happy to see us go,” says Aylmer Express publisher John Hueston with a chuckle. The paper is not going anywhere any time soon, but it serves as a […]
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Rethinking the future of statue in front of Port Hope town hall

The death of George Floyd, the 46-year old man who died while in the custody in the Minneapolis police, became a lightning rod for intense debate. Even in Northumberland County, there were protests held to draw attention to the issues of unfair treatment of Indigenous and Black people, as well as other minorities. Out of these concerns, other discussions have emerged, reflected both globally and locally. One of those debates is over the statue of Lt. Colonel Arthur Williams in front of Port Hope town hall. It raises concerns about aggrandizing historic figures who represent people who participated in racist activities. Continue Reading →

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Cobourg police chief looks at defunding in the face of protests

The death of George Floyd, the 46-year old man who died while in the custody in the Minneapolis police, became a lightning rod for intense debate. Even in Northumberland County, there were protests held to draw attention to the issues of unfair treatment of Indigenous and Black people, as well as other minorities. Out of these concerns, other discussions have emerged, reflected both globally and locally. Today’s show will try to explore two of those. One of the major issues coming out of the Floyd demonstrations centres around police defunding, which grew out of a larger protest against police brutality. Continue Reading →

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In Canada, a government program to support local news tries to determine who’s most deserving

Before the novel coronavirus struck the United States, there was already a small-but-measurable groundswell of support for more government support for local news. But the virus and its devastating effects on advertising — even as the audience for local news has exploded — has accelerated that discussion. (Most recently, […]
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Hello, is it facts we’re looking for?

It was mid-January and the Poynter staff were preparing for another ambitious year. After all, in 2019, Poynter trained 64,582 journalists, educators, students and citizens; hosted 394 seminars, workshops and custom teaching programs; trained people from all 50 states, traveled to 22 countries and taught on-location at 470 organizations; […]
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Hyperlocal news network to create 15 new jobs in coming weeks

A hyperlocal news network is set to recruit at least 15 new journalists in the coming weeks, its chief executive has revealed. Nub News , which already operates in 32 towns and boroughs around the UK, is planning to make a series of appointments across the country following boss […]
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Michael Geist: How to pay for the future of journalism

Newspaper boxes in Toronto. Canadian media organizations face difficult challenges in an age of virtually unlimited internet competition, a dramatic shift toward digital advertising and an unprecedented global economic and health crisis. Ottawa has thus far declined to “take on” Google and Facebook by requiring them to fund local […]
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