PLUG: New blog on the block


This mail is to tell you about a new local blog which aims to start a debate about the future of news, current affairs and issues reporting in Bristol.

Local newspapers across the country are having problems with declining readership and recession. In Bristol, the Evening Post and Western Daily Press are making almost a third of staff redundant, while ITV West’s local coverage is now almost non-existent.

At the same time, we have seen the rise of DIY news on the web with sites like Bristol Indymedia and various bloggers and newsgroups. I thought it would be interesting to get lots of informed people talking about the future of news reporting in Bristol, so I’ve started this blog.

In coming weeks I plan to post a series of short articles addressing various questions and hopefully will get some debate going. It might be a complete waste of time, or it could fire some really interesting ideas. We might even create some wonderful new media models for other cities to emulate.

I am a Bristol-based freelance journalist, working for local and national organisations, mostly in print. I am not an employee of any media firm and have no ulterior or financial motives in doing this. It’s simply that the future of news is something that colleagues and I discuss constantly in the pub and something which we all assume, rightly or wrongly, is an important issue.

So let’s open the debate up beyond the pub. I’m doing it under a pseudonym for now, not because I have anything to hide, but because some of you know me (at least by name) and I don’t want anyone’s feelings about me and my work (which I hope would mostly be good!) affecting the debate or comment.

Please take a look, please make lots of comments, please tell any friends and colleagues you think might be interested and please link from your blogs and websites.

It’s at:

FYI, this mail is being sent to a couple of dozen local workers in old and new media as well as some bloggers, councillors and business people.

This entry was posted in Blogging, Bristol, Bristol Evening Post, Culture, Journalism, Media. Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to PLUG: New blog on the block

  1. Paul Smith says:

    just because I fancy being off topic – well everyone else does it

  2. snafu says:

    stephen williams … only 34.4% ineffective?

  3. chris hutt says:

    Paul, what about the Labour Cabinet? What ratings would they get? All 99.99% effective?

  4. Ella says:

    Omdz Lynne Featherstone (my local MP for 3 days a week) is in the top 5. U dun no!!!

  5. MattB says:

    Stephen Williams, what can you say, I know he is the libdem education person, but NOT ONE single issue or topic has he appeared to look into or do anything about my area and not one single email has he bothered to respond to (fairly small sample of the 3 ppl i know and myself that have sent him emails, but still!)

    Remind why I should vote libdem? Was the attraction they are different from the “top two”? It seems Mr Williams is doing everything in his power to copy the arrogance and general disdane for the general public the other two are famous for.

  6. Get out says:

    MattB, you realise MPs dont actually deal personally with the hundreds of letters and emails they receive every day, right? They have an office to do that. Why dont you send Mr Williams an email complaining about lack of response – If his office have any sense they will intercept it and find your response before he gives them a bollocking for it!

  7. MattB says:

    I do understand they are busy and have teams etc, the very reason I thought someone could respond to a few emails as they are surely the quickest most time efficiant form of communication.

    I will keep on trying, but if he can’t run a small staff well enough to answer a email, should I really vote for him and trust him to run the countrys education policy?

  8. Holly says:

    Very good idea! There are some excellent local amateur journalists and bloggers who report things with real integrity who would be interested in this too.

    Of recent, I am disgusted with the Evening Post for the way they portrayed campaigners who have worked so hard to save Grove Wood from Bristol’s well-known rogue property developer. The paper simply tried to make a story out of Mr Jafari’s false accusations, which was based upon no absolutely no factual evidence whatsoever. I am really beginning to hate their amateurish style of reporting, especially as they are supposed to be the voice of the people!

  9. Media Mouse says:

    I think that there should be more sites lilke this and BB in Bristol.

    We are thought to be a “media mecca” in Bristol – but have a dieing traditional media?! We need a voice(s) to covert the realy issues of the day rather than those of importance to advertisers.

    Bring it on!

  10. Media Mouse says:

    Whooops typos in the last post – mouse paws on keys 😉

  11. snafu says:

    Chris “what about the Labour Cabinet? What ratings would they get? All 99.99% effective?”

    Yup. Labour tops 99.99% effective at ripping off the taxpayer and feathering their first second and third nests, for sure. Haven’t they done well … for themselves.

  12. Sam says:

    thats why you should all send your news to !

    cus well print anything we arent afraid of court. And we will only grow with help from everyone out there. so whatever you can help with email us! website coming soon.


  13. Paul Smith says:

    Chris Hutt

    remember this is a vote of lib dem members not the public.

    Sam when you get it back what are you going to do with it?

  14. chris hutt says:

    Yes I know Paul. What I meant was what would the Labour Cabinet score in an equivalent poll, given that Labour Party members are not exactly encouraged to express their views with the same candour.

    Is it not to the credit of the Lib-Dems that they are open and uncontrolled enough for such a potentially awkward poll to be publicised? It may give easy ammunition to political opponents but after over a decade of Labour micro-management I find it refreshing.

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