Richmond Confidential announces partnership with The Globe
on March 24, 2010
Both are committed to solid journalism; both are headed by leaders who seek to aggressively adapt to a challenging media landscape.
And both are growing in their roles as news-providers to Richmond residents.
The Richmond Globe and Richmondconfidential.org, a grant-funded “hyperlocal” news Web site founded at UC Berkeley, have agreed to enter into a partnership to provide Richmond readers enhanced news coverage.
The collaboration will include sharing information and content, as well as cross-linking each publication’s Web sites. In addition, the partnership will bring Globe staffers and Berkeley students and professors into a working relationship in which they share ideas and strategies for news reporting in Richmond, Globe publisher Vernon Whitmore said.
“The Globe is hopeful and proud about this partnership,” Whitmore said. “We are impressed with what Berkeley’s program has done and what it aspires to do, and we are excited to work with the journalists of tomorrow.”
The Globe will publish selected Richmondconfidential.org articles in its printed newspaper.
The weekly Globe has been a steady presence in Richmond since Whitmore founded it in 2004. Its formula of community news, targeted distribution and uplifting tone has fueled a circulation increase to 25,000 copies and a surge in advertising dollars this year, Whitmore said.
Richmondconfidential.org is a news Web site launched in October by UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, with the help of a $500,000 Ford Foundation grant aimed at digital news innovations. The grant also funds the school’s Oaklandnorth.net and Missionlocal.org sites, which provide coverage in Oakland and San Francisco.
The grant specifically targets communities underserved by private media, according to the journalism school Dean Neil Henry.
William Drummond, the professor of journalism who oversaw the launch of Richmondconfidential.org, said the partnership should benefit residents and both news outlets.
“The Globe reaches places where Richmondconfidential.org does not,” Drummond wrote in a response to an email inquiry. Drummond added that The Globe will benefit from the additional content provided by Berkeley-trained student journalists.
“(It) should be a win-win situation,” Drummond added. “It’s a collaboration that makes sense.”
Richmondconfidential.org launched with more than a dozen full-time student-journalists last fall. To date, the site has published more than 300 story packages, including maps, videos, photo-galleries and interactive features. Coverage has spanned a range of issues, particularly local politics, grassroots anti-crime and revitalization efforts, and the city’s diverse population.
The staff has shrunk considerably during the spring semester, but will get a fresh infusion of students in August.
Drummond said the partnership will also lend the young, Berkeley-based Web site more credibility.
“None of us live in Richmond,” Drummond wrote. “That means that Richmondconfidential.org appears to be on the outside looking in. Partnering with The Globe removes this impression.”
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