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Keywords

Crisis Coverage, Small-Market Newspaper, News Framing, Content Analysis, Command Post Point of View, Salmonella, Newsworthiness

Abstract

This paper explores crisis coverage in local, small-market newspapers. Comparing relevant theory with the practice of journalism in Alamosa, CO's Valley Courier, this content analysis suggests close relationships between media, government and business in small communities, contributing to coverage that veers away from journalism's best practices. The result is coverage that overlooks potentially important information about the crisis' causes and eschews journalism's watchdog and investigative responsibilities, while offering local elite sources significant degrees of power over the shape of the coverage. As national news coverage contracts, situations like this rise in prominence.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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