Journalism matters, now more than ever in a changing world

Journalism matters, now more than ever.
The theme of this year’s National Newspaper Week celebration resonates with a simple truth, a philosophy that applies at the highest level of government as well as right here in your hometown community.
The core mission of sharing accurate information, asking questions of our local leaders and putting a spotlight on those whose stories deserve to be told is and always has been what community journalism is all about. That mission has not changed, though the world around us and the way people get their information most certainly has.
It’s journalism that chronicles the county board meeting, the arguments about whether a change is needed in the local ambulance service, activity on the local business scene, the achievements of high school scholars, the heroics or perhaps struggles of area sports teams, and the frequent stories of volunteers who help make life better for someone in need. Those are the stories you’ll find each week in the Aurora News-Register.
Journalism exists to keep the people informed. It exists to spread knowledge and to provide viewpoints from many different perspectives. And community journalism exists to keep small towns connected. You may not agree with the source, as we heard often throughout the past year regarding ANR coverage of the ambulance issue, but it is critical that information and dialogue on such emotional issues be shared.
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.
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.
As journalists, we’re trained to keep a professional distance, to make sure we don’t become part of the story. While we’re not the story as reporters and editors, the importance of our work, our craft is very much the story this week – especially as President Trump calls journalists the “enemy of the American people.”
This year’s theme is right on the mark: “Journalism matters. NOW more than ever.”
Kurt Johnson

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