The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Sep 28, 2010

New Tools Will Help Communities Assess the Flow of Local News and Information

Posted by Mayur Patel

One year ago, a blue-ribbon Knight Commission presented 15 recommendations for helping to ensure America's communities are informed about the issues that shape them.

As part of its report, the Knight Commission created an eight-point checklist of ingredients of a healthy information community ' including high-speed Internet access for all, the availability of government services and information online and sources of quality local journalism.

Until now, though, there hasn't been a way to measure these elements across communities. That's why Knight Foundation, in partnership with the Monitor Institute and with advisory support from the Pew Research Center's Internet and American Life Project,'is working to create a set of easy-to-use tools, so that communities can self-assess their local information flows and take steps to improve them.

The Community Information Scorecard is being pilot tested in three diverse Knight communities this fall: Philadelphia, San Jose and Macon.

The findings will be released in early 2011. In the meantime, we hope you'll visit to learn more about the project.

Knight Foundation, along with the Aspen Institute and others will gather tomorrow at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. to mark the one-year anniversary of the Knight Commission report. A new white paper detailing the policy reforms needed to achieve universal broadband access in the United States also will be unveiled.

Tune in to the live webcast of the event at 10 a.m. tomorrow at, or on Twitter by following #knightcomm.

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