Friday, February 23, 2018

Good local news: NPR station WAMU buying and restarting DCist.com


Good news for local news: the local NPR station WAMU is buying and relaunching DCist.com, the sadly defunct local news site. The parent company of DCist, Gothamist, was bought last year and and suddenly shut down shortly after the staff voted to unionize. WAMU plans to relaunch it in spring.

DCist, which was around since 2004, was a great source of local news, arts, entertainment, food and a lot more.

The sale is part of a bigger effort by local public radio stations to buy the local outposts of Gothamist: WNYC in New York City and KPCC in Los Angeles bought Gothamist and LAist, respectively. Former DCist editor Martin Austermuhle works at WAMU.

WAMU had a few good quotes about the site:
"WAMU connects Washingtonians with each other and the world, and DCist will enhance our coverage of the region and expand our digital reach," said JJ Yore, general manager, WAMU. "At a time when local journalism is declining everywhere, we are excited to revive this important news source for our region."

"The audience who turned to DCist did so to feel more connected to their neighbors and community," said Andi McDaniel, senior director of content and news, WAMU. "The WAMU audience wants to do the same, and the addition of the DCist platform helps us bring the quality journalism we’ve been producing for decades to the neighborhood level."
(Full disclosure: I wrote for DCist too, doing music reviews, maps, Overheard in DC and other random things.) 

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