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HOME THE NEWSROOM MY NEWSCAST NEWSPEAK BEHIND THE STORY THE RATINGS GAME ABOUT THE SERIES RESOURCES
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Women/Minorities in Media
Looks vs. Brains?
What's News?
If it Bleads, it Leads
Building Community
The News Business
Behind the Story Photo of News Director

This section of LOCAL NEWS Online takes an in-depth look at the issues behind the stories we watch on television. In digging deeper into the challenges presented in the series, these essays explore ethical issues, corporate dilemmas, and questions of inclusiveness and representation that every newsroom in America faces.

Local television news has an almost magical power over its audience, especially during times of crisis and upset. We watch it as a single point of certainty amid uncertain circumstances. We use it to keep in touch with what's happening in our communities. And we value it as a quick rundown of the most important events in our cities.

Photo of Faces from Newscast Yet the people and companies that produce our local television news programs are like us: vulnerable, biased, and pressured to perform in conflicting ways. Often but not always within the bounds of journalistic integrity, local reporters and news directors are required to make tough decisions that will affect the ratings of their stations, the quality of news stories they deliver to the public, and, ultimately, the security of their own jobs.

In five dramatic episodes, LOCAL NEWS deals with a station wrestling with newsroom diversity, creating an image appealing to its public, constantly redefining its news angle, its crime-reporting ethics, and its role in building community, while at the same time struggling to become a profitable business.



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