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  • Writer's pictureKaren Young

Covering the stakes, not the odds: good news for progressives

Updated: Mar 12



 

Welcome to Message Monday!

 

It’s no wonder we have so many corrupt and idiotic people in office, when the media is so deeply committed to issue-free, horse-race election coverage.  Well, there is at least one media outlet that’s committing to a different approach: the Arizona Mirror.

 

The news came during an episode of 1A, a fairly decent NPR show out of DC, called How the media can responsibly cover the 2024 election.  The Arizona Mirror is an affiliate of States Newsroom, the nation’s largest state-focused nonprofit news organization, supported by grants and donations, active in 39 states at present, including the Plains and the Deep South.  No paywalls.  The States Newsroom is primarily distributing, not producing, news content, so they aren’t committing to stakes-based election coverage themselves.  But they do generally feature serious news about state politics and the impact on people.

 

One very simple idea from the 1A story:  Fewer stories, but better stories.  This is a good way to get the most out of limited resources.

 

The Mirror admits they did the horse-race thing too, but now they are "ditching junk food election coverage to focus on what’s at stake when we vote."  They were on a bit of a liberal-elite high horse about it in this article, but then redeemed themselves in my eyes by quoting a song from hard-rock band Tool that could be seen as being about the stakes:  

 

Stay the grand finale,

Stay the reading of our swan song and epilogue

One drive to stay alive

It’s elementary

Muster every fiber

Mobilize

Stay alive

 

It’s not yet clear exactly how they plan to do this – they’re soliciting ideas from readers. But thank you, Arizona Mirror, thank you, States Newsroom, and let’s hope that more news media can see their way toward taking this pledge.

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