Four staff writers at The Republican, the daily paper serving Springfield, Mass., researched the spread of web-based citizen watchdog movements in cities and town of Western Massachusetts. Their March 14, 2007, report (ALT URL) is one of the best summaries of the reasons why citizens are banding together in small groups and changing the course of civic affairs. Efforts spotlighted are in the towns of Wilbraham, Agawam, Amherst, Warren, Ware and Chicopee. The lead writers were Jeanette DeForge, Suzanne mcLaughlin with help from Chirs Hamel and Elizabeth Roman.
Quill Magazine's February edition carries a story about the introduction of the New England News Forum to a meeting with Maine editors and members of the public.
Writing in The Portland Phoenix, Sara Donnelly describes a traditional concept of "news councils" and suggests the New England News Forum is weighing whether to ever hold "hearings" as a media-accountability tool.
Consult to regional media on accountability issues, via:
The New England News Forum is partnering with a California-based non-profit organization, Newstrust, to test a new way of studying reporting quality. Newstrust is a two-year-old effort to build a web-based resource which allows consumers and journalists alike to systematically rate the quality, content and trustworthiness of news sources and individual stories. To learn more go to the Newstrust BETA site created for the New England News Forum.
PANEL DISCUSSION: "Ethics & Accountability: Helping Maine Media to Connect with the Public," Monday, Nov. 20 at the University of Southern Maine, in Portland, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Includes Robert Steele, Poynter Institute media-ethics scholar; Gary Gilson, director, Minnesota News Council. Organized by the Maine chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and the New England News Forum. Free and public.