How can N.D. newspapers improve?

BISMARCK–Last week, I was appointed to a seat on the North Dakota Newspaper Association’s board of directors.

The board includes newspaper editors, publishers and advertising directors from newspapers of various sizes across the state. From what I’ve been told, it’s rare for a reporter to be on the board.

But I sought the seat anyway for various reasons. For one, I wanted to represent a younger generation of media consumers—those who get much of their news from the Internet instead of a hard copy paper.

As a newspaper person who has ventured into video and television, I also firmly believe this is the future of media (it already is at larger media outlets) and want to be involved in guiding other North Dakota newspapers along that path.

But more importantly, I want to be the public’s representative on this board and want to hear from you. I want to hear your feedback on the state of newspapers in North Dakota, and I don’t just mean the Forum Communications newspapers. I mean any of them.

I began working for North Dakota newspapers in 1999 and have worked for 10 weeklies (the BHG papers in the Hazen, Beulah, Garrison area), the Bismarck Tribune, The Dickinson Press, The Forum, the Jamestown Sun and the Grand Forks Herald. I’ve also gotten to know editors from other papers throughout the years. So, I’m familiar with the state’s smallest papers up to the largest.

What do you think North Dakota newspapers do well? What could they do better? What aren’t they doing now that they should be? Leave me comments below or email me at politics@wday.com. Your comments will not be published. They will be used in discussion to make your media better.

One thought on “How can N.D. newspapers improve?

  1. In the case of the Minot Daily News which I read daily, they could do more to acquaint their readers with locations of stories by including map graphics. This could not only assist Minot residents with where the smaller towns are from which news is coming, but also with locations of other stories. Here’s an example: Media in Minot constantly referred in the last few years to a proposed overpass “on 55th St.” (It’s now being built and is also the location of one of the FEMA trailer camps.) Maybe we readers are just lazy, but why do I have to get out a Minot phone book to look this up? Other location examples: Mouse River Park, the various wildlife refuges, Roughrider Campground, gun club shooting range, etc. Many of these sites do not appear on maps. By the way, I have suggested this to the Minot Daily without receiving a response.

    Here’s another suggestion (all newspapers): Who is responsible for horrible spelling in classifieds? Is it the employees in those depts. or is it the people who submit the ads? If it’s the employees–really. Pretty awful–really.

    thanks for asking,
    Janinne

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