Information about radio and TV news outlets involved in public interest journalism has been added for the first time to the national news database complied by the Public Interest Journalism Initiative (PIJI).
The Australian Newsroom Mapping Project (ANMP) is designed to show the health of public interest journalism across Australia. Data is compiled and analysed on news production and availability at the community, local, metropolitan, state and national levels before being added to the searchable index – the first of its kind in Australia.
PIJI researchers look at three key themes: diversity, community value and support, and investment and financial sustainability.
The aim of the ANMP is to identify communities without fair and equal access to public interest journalism and local news, particularly during emergencies.
Broadcasters across Australia
Some 400 radio and television records have now been added to the database, based on publicly available data from the Australian Media and Communications Authority (ACMA) and an audit by PIJI researchers for evidence of public interest journalism production at each station.
In making information about broadcasters available, the PIJI has displayed publishers and broadcasters separately because of the difference in their geographies:
- print and digital outlets are represented by the local government areas that they report on (production)
- radio and television outlets are represented by the local government areas where they are licensed to broadcast (availability).
This relates to the bigger geographic footprint of broadcasters, whose licences may allow transmission rights across half of Australia, but they may not necessarily be available and producing news in every area covered by the license.
The PIJI is unable to independently verify news production for broadcasters as there is no reliable public archive for broadcast news. This means that live streams, where available, need to be assessed, which is beyond PIJI staff or financial resources.
The PIJI is now inviting industry and community members to review the data and suggest additions or changes by the end of October. This content will be assessed, with updated broadcast data to be provided in the monthly data report from November.
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