Highland Park Planet

By NJ NEWS COMMONS

Local Beat is NJ News Commons’ weekly roundup of the best and most topical reporting from local news sites around New Jersey.

HIGHLAND PARK PLANET HITS THE GROUND RUNNING
The Highland Park Planet began publishing this week and dove straight into a story about major development projects on the table. The town of 14,000 is on track to see more than 500 new residential units by the year 2024. Editor/publisher Pam Hersh reports on the pros and cons here.

A FUNERAL DIRECTOR’S GOODBYE
There’s something undeniably poignant about the funeral of the person who spent a lifetime ushering people to the other side, and Morristown Green’s Kevin Coughlin captured it in this story.

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Josh Stearns Profile Picture

By JOSH STEARNS

Welcome to the Local Fix. Each week we look at key debates in journalism sustainability and community engagement through the lens of local news, starting with one good idea… 

One Good Idea: Create a Collaborative Election Night “Open Newsroom.” The NJ News Commons is working with students, faculty, hyperlocal publishers, nonprofit journalists and more to build and maintain a live election map for anyone in the state to use as the results come in.

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Photo Credit: New Brunswick Today

By NJ NEWS COMMONS

Local Beat is NJ News Commons’ weekly roundup of the best and most topical reporting from local news sites around New Jersey.

ARREST, THEN THANKS: THE STRANGE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN CHARLIE KRATOVIL AND THE NBPD
It’s been a busy year for New Brunswick Today and its editor, Charlie Kratovil. In February, Kratovil sued Rutgers University and the City of New Brunswick to get them to release maps showing the division of jurisdiction between the two police departments – and he won. In July, he personally witnessed a New Brunswick Police officer throw two ticket books in a public garbage can, one of which included parking tickets that were never filed in court, leading to an internal investigation.

Days later, he was contacted by someone who claimed to have information about the officer who threw away the ticket books. When Kratovil showed up, however, the “tip” turned out to be a sting and Kratovil was arrested on what he says were false charges. Luckily, he recorded the whole thing.

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Requiem for a newspaper

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that Stanley Terrell was the first black reporter at The Star Ledger. In fact, Ernest Johnston was the first.

By ANDAIYE TAYLOR

The publicity billed it as a critical discussion of the impact of the Star-Ledger decamping from Newark.

But in the end, last night’s “Requiem for a Newspaper” panel discussion at Rutgers Newark, where the audience was largely comprised of Star-Ledger alums, was part Ledger family reunion, part trip down memory lane, and part highlight reel of the paper’s achievements and shortcomings through the years — with a little business analysis sprinkled in.

Newark historian Clement Price, who the Ledger has often turned to for historical context in its Newark stories, argued that Newark will have to wait and see what the Star-Ledger’s withdrawal means for the city. “Newark has lost newspapers in the past,” he said, citing the New Jersey Herald and the Jersey Journal.

And then there’s the question as to whether the Ledger has really left at all. “They have 9,000 square feet in the Gateway,” pointed out former Mayor Sharpe James, who was brought in as a panelist, referring to the news organization’s Newark bureau. Veteran Newark Evening News city hall reporter Andy Baglivo concurred: “The Star-Ledger’s not dead yet. They haven’t moved out yet. There’s something left of it.”  (more…)

MSU Crest

Pizza & Politics Ad

REGISTER HERE.

The Center for Cooperative Media is teaming up with NJ Spotlight to host a night of pizza and politics on election night 2014! Together, we’re going to build and maintain a live election map as the results come in on election night – and we’re going to pay our volunteers in pizza!

This is an opportunity for students, faculty, hyperlocal publishers, freelancers, and pretty much any journalist without a newsroom to come together and report on the elections results as they’re released. Our open newsroom will allow you to work and interact with journalists, publishers, and folks of all different backgrounds and experiences who share your enthusiasm for the news. It’s an opportunity you won’t want to miss!

The event is open to the public, so anyone is welcome to drop by to see what we’re up to. But we do need a group of committed people who can promise to stick around until all the votes are counted. If that sounds like you, send an email to Debbie Galant and let her know that you’re interested in participating!

We’ll be setting up shop in Schmitt Hall, Room 311 at Montclair State University from 8:00 pm until the last vote is counted!

Click here to register!

Josh Stearns Profile Picture

By JOSH STEARNS

I’ve got a slightly different format for the Local Fix this week, but we will still start with one good idea:

One Good Idea: Be State Smart. The nonpartisan National Priorities Project released a new tool this week to help journalists (and anybody else) track federal spending down to the state level, including how federal dollars are used in your state from salaries to public assistance programs. There is also data on what businesses in your state are paying in federal taxes. This will be a great tool research on budget issues and contextualizing federal spending for local communities.

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Krystal Knapp (left) of Planet Princeton and NBC's Dr. Nancy Snyderman (right).

By DEBBIE GALANT

Local Beat is NJ News Commons’ weekly roundup of the best and most topical reporting from local news sites around New Jersey.

Story updated 3:45 pm to correct an error on Knapp’s comment approval process.

The big local story in New Jersey this week, as everybody knows by now, came from Krystal Knapp over at Planet Princeton, who outed NBC’s Dr. Nancy Snyderman for violating a self-imposed quarantine after a cameraman on her reporting team came down with Ebola while they were covering the epidemic in Liberia. The story was so big it got picked up by everyone from Gawker to the New York Times and Knapp’s traffic spiked to 40,000 page views on Monday. That’s the epitome of success for a hyperlocal publisher. But, we wanted to know, what is it really like when you’re the one whose story goes viral?

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Jane Elizabeth of Sunlight Foundation teaches political fact checking

This story has been updated with video of the event.

Kathy Kiely, managing editor of the Sunlight Foundation, stepped in front of the room of New Jersey investigative and political reporters and began with the familiar laugh line, “I’m from Washington and I’m here to help you.”

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Simulcast

By DEBBIE GALANT

Maestro David Dworkin, conductor and father of Conductorcise, an exercise program that asks participants to imagine they are leading a symphony orchestra, will be the guest at a special simulcast broadcast from Montclair State University on Thursday.

in the studioDworkin will be featured on Super Aging Today, an internet radio show created by Adriane Berg and Stuart Bochner, publishers of SuperAging NJ, a site geared toward Baby Boomers, older adults and caregivers living in Warren, Hunterdon and Somerset Counties. The show with Dworkin will air this Thursday, Oct. 16, at 10 a.m. (more…)

Snyderman
Josh Stearns Profile Picture

By JOSH STEARNS

Welcome to the Local Fix. Each week we look at key debates in journalism sustainability and community engagement through the lens of local news, starting with one good idea… 

One Good Idea: Emoji the News. Both Boston.com and Bill Penn recently “translated” their state’s governor debates with emojis and had good user feedback and engagement. Could emoji’s be an on-ramp to other coverage and give users a chance for real-time feedback?

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