Volume 5, Issue 1

This article examines how the Washington Post and 11 daily newspapers in Virginia covered the 2013 gubernatorial campaign of Libertarian Robert Sarvis, who received 6.5 percent of the overall vote on Election Day. The study found that community newspapers with circulations under 50,000 provided a higher percentage of their news coverage to the third-party candidate than did the Post and the larger daily newspapers in Virginia.

Journalists long have been the gatekeepers of content for traditional media, but now with social media, does that role still stand? Although studies have focused on larger circulation newspapers, the literature suggests a gap among community newspapers’ judgment of news values and gatekeeping as applied to social media postings.  A survey of 108 journalists working at newspapers with a circulation of 30,000 or less revealed insights into how journalists perceive the traditional news values when posting to the social media. Helpfulness played highly on Facebook while timeliness played better on Twitter.

This article explores the relationships among newspaper quality, circulation, and newspaper circulation penetration at North Carolina community newspapers during two three-year periods in 1998, 1999, and 2000 and 2012, 2013, and 2014. Winning prizes seems to be correlated with circulation size: the greater the circulation, the greater the resources to devote to creating journalism that captures awards. However, the gauge of the success and impact of a weekly newspaper community is evinced by the percentage (the higher the better) of circulation penetration in the core community.