Having credible source for news matters in today’s world

“Real newspapers. Real news.”
That’s a theme newspapers across the country are touting this week, recognizing changes in our society as we celebrate National Newspaper Week.
Those words pack a punch these days in an era when it’s not as easy as it once was to decipher what is fact amidst the constant flow of information in our world from what is something else entirely. We need and deserve to know what is real, not fake news or opinion-driven stories posted online as the gospel truth.  So much has changed in the way we communicate, share information and tune in to the world around us, but what has not changed is the need for accurate, reliable reporting, especially on the local front where news of the day impacts us more directly.
A story in this week’s edition reports than most rural Nebraskans are confident in their ability to distinguish between real and fake news, which I find extremely intriguing. So many news reports from supposedly credible news organizations come with a noticeable twist to the left or the right, while other stories, particularly online, name no sources and offer no bylines, just a writer/blogger’s version of the truth. Assuming that those sources are credible can be risky, and yet how is one to know?
According to the 2017 Nebraska Rural Poll, just over eight in 10 rural Nebraskans surveyed either somewhat or greatly trust information from their local news organizations. The source does matter, in other words, as it should, and in Hamilton County the best “local” source is the newspaper you are reading now.
The Aurora News-Register, as well as newspapers across the state and country, has real reporters, people you know, covering meetings, interviewing sources with various perspectives, taking photos and in short documenting what’s happening in our community as best we can. That’s a huge challenge with so much happening on any given day, but it’s one we take very seriously.
We strive to be a watchdog of local government, asking hard questions that need to be asked, while also lifting up citizens in our community who deserve a feature spotlight. ANR reporters are at ballgames, music concerts, fund raisers, community celebrations, county fairs and events year-around that bring us together.
Of course we have an online presence and reach our audience via social media because that’s the world we live in. The difference is that regardless of which News-Register platform you choose to view, real reporting was at its foundation, and always will be.
Bottom line: Real newspapers reporting real news have never been more important or valuable to readers and communities than they are today.
Kurt Johnson

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