What we’re reading, and why you should too

Welcome to BFF398, a collaborative effort on behalf of the Journalism 398 class offered by the department of journalism and public relations at Chico State. Journalism 398 is a first-run Social Media Strategy course, populated by about two dozen journalism and public relations students and taught by Poynter Teachapalooza alumna Debra Johnson.

This site has been built to celebrate the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication’s National News Engagement Day, Oct. 7. As a class, we have compiled a list of our favorite lesser-known news sources, organized into the “beats” that interest us as future professionals. We’ve provided you with sets of sites dedicated to News, Social Media & Technology, Sports, Life & Style and Entertainment.

Now, why BFF you ask?  Because knowledge is power.  News is your friend. If it’s interesting, reliable and trustworthy, a good news source might just be your best friend online, right?

Our class set out to develop a list of some of the most fascinating news sources off the path beaten by millions of readers. The collection of sites we’re sharing with you emphasizes the diversity that has become so salient in the Millennial interpretation of what qualifies as a news source.

Blogs, Feeds & Fixes. In the early days of online journalism, bloggers weren’t taken seriously. Now that journalists develop blogs and vice versa, it should be no surprise that a Millennial media round-up is heavy on the blogs. We’ve grown to like learning with a personal touch. There’s a fair share of more traditional news feeds tucked into our lists, but admittedly, some of this stuff might be called “fluff” in an old school news room. But “fluff” has become a commonly used quick fix in a media cycle increasingly dictated by a mobile-first attention span.

Some of the sites we found examine and expand the modern definition of journalism. Others focus on niche markets of media consumers. A few are just downright hilarious, adorable and strange, but that can be much-needed between hard news benders. Hopefully you’ll find something particularly engaging among our collection of sources.

John Riggin, senior journalism & public relations major

PS: Don’t forget that this is all for #newsengagementday, so please #engagenews and share!

Chico State J and PR

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