Michigan continues to suffer from a catastrophic economic meltdown, which makes it difficult for traditional news media to provide Lansing residents the news, information and analysis they need. So we offer Lansing Online News as an incubator for new ideas about how citizens can work together to produce quality news for the community.
The good news is that the Lansing area houses a tremendous number of talented and committed citizens. If we work together, we can keep each other informed about the issues that matter – news, politics, arts, entertainment, religion, food, heatlh and community.
The project began as a showcase for the weekly webcast Wednesdays at One with Bonnie (Bucqueroux) and Bill (Castanier) that began in January 2009. A web pioneer, Bucqueroux recently retired from Michigan State University’s School of Journalism to devote herself to pushing the boundaries of online journalism. Bill (Mittenlit) Castanier is widely recognized for his keen interest and entrepreneurship in new media, as well as his lifelong love affair with books. The duo continue to host webcasts from the Gone Wired Cafe in downtown Lansing.
The Lansing Online News website re-launched in November as a full-fledged experiment in multimedia, online citizen journalism. Veteran journalist and well-known area blogger Wes Thorp joined the project to provide leadership, blog coaching and continuing coverage of community politics and other news. The trio continues to recruit new contributors, to enhance our hyperlocal focus. New contributors include community activist Chris Singer, Tom Rico of the Peace Education Center and development analyst Stephanie Whitbeck. (With more to come soon, we hope.)
All of have unique interests and complementary and sometimes conflicting views, which we hope will help the site evolve into a must-read/must-view aggregation of local news and opinion that reflects the diversity of views in the community. Our challenges include staying current with cutting-edge web technology. (We are using a WordPress theme called Hybrid News, and our webcasts are hosted by Livestream. Most of our videos are also posted to YouTube. Expect a return of the webcasts, as well as some great slideshows and podcasts soon.)
Please email us if you would like to contribute in any way. We are eager to recruit local voices, and we can offer training and coaching in web skills that will serve you well in many different fields, from journalism to public relations to web design and multimedia.
We are also groping our way toward building a new economic model that would encourage and support local businesses in new ways. If you click on the Advertisers tab above, you can learn more about our innovative Digi-Dollars concept.
Please also take a moment to click on that RSS button at the upper right so that you will automatically be notified when we post new material.