18 April 2013

What is your "website of record"?

A few weeks ago I was looking for some French reading materials online when I ran across the phrase "newspaper of record". That wasn't the first time I had heard that phrase, but running across it again made me think about it in a new way. (By the way, I'm using the secondary definition of the phrase, which is a newspaper that is considered to have high journalistic standards and is referred to as a reliable source by most of the reading public.) With print newspapers shutting down and people getting much of their news from the internet, I think we need a new phrase. The first one that came to mind for me was "website of record".

I rarely read our local paper or watch the news on TV, so when I hear someone mention a news event in passing -- this week, it was the fertilizer plant explosion in Texas -- I look online to get the details. My first choice is CNN.com because if it is something that has hit the national news, they will have it right on the front page. When you click through to the story, there will be updates with time stamps. I trust this site because the TV network that started it has been around for ages and is often quoted as a trusted source. Sometimes CNN lets me down. One of the most publicized incidences was when Michael Jackson died, and TMZ was reporting details of his death for hours while CNN and other traditional news outlets were still saying it was a rumor. I like to think that happened because CNN was waiting until they got solid information before reporting Jackson's death as fact. That makes them look more trustworthy in my eyes.

When it comes to news, do you have a particular website that you trust most?


Allyson said...

CNN is good, also NYTimes or Globe and Mail (for Canadian news). Really, I just google the topic, look for a recent posting, and pick a news source that a recognize the name. But I also like to look at more regional sources for news closer to home. Seattle Times, Vancouver Sun, even the local free paper has a website, which is more likely to have local news than anyone else.

Dani S said...

Allyson, I don't think of the big newspaper sites like the NY Times because I can never remember which ones have paywalls. If I am looking for local North Carolina news, I go to the website for either the local TV station or the local paper. It is tougher to find local news for this area online, though.