Poynter

Website review by
Erin Brereton, Common Sense Media
Poynter Website Poster Image
News-analysis site focuses on accuracy, truth in stories.

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The parents' guide to what's in this website.

Educational value

Kids can learn journalistic principles ranging from fact checking, ethics to media law. Online course highlights provide brief best practice tips on interviewing, writing about climate change, other topics. Users can also pay for web-based seminars. Content isn't written for kids, so some may not find it initially compelling. But Poynter's coverage can be used to help kids understand difference between reputable facts, non-reputable fiction.

Positive messages

Ethics section touches on why journalistic decisions were made, number of posts stress importance of being accurate, honest.

Violence

Articles that mention violence discuss it in regard to media coverage, instead of glorifying violent acts.

Sex

Any mentions involve news stories that covered topic, but some details may not be appropriate for younger users.

 

Language

Articles, reprinted tweets sometimes feature words like "f--k," "s--t."

 

Consumerism

Banner ads for journalism higher education programs, commercial goods appear throughout site, some paid content on site.

Drinking, drugs & smoking

Articles occasionally mention drug use, but in relation to how it's covered in media.

 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Poynter is a news site focused on analyzing coverage from various sources. The site wasn't created for kids, but thanks to its analysis, the content isn’t full of objectionable images or stories. Some items may reference stories that feature adult themes in an appropriate, objective context, but parents may want to view the site with younger children.

 

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What's it about?

POYNTER.ORG is a website run by The Poynter Institute, which was founded in 1975 to elevate journalism. This media-centric website provides news, best practice tips for journalists, and other information. Users get access to e-learning courses (for a fee), media industry job listings, and updates on the newspaper industry, ethics, reporting, and other journalistic topics.

Is it any good?

This site can be an invaluable resource to help young reporters hone their craft, but other readers may need some patience in exploring its articles. Offering insight into recent coverage, career highlights, best practice tips, and other information, the site serves as a guide to help strengthen writers' journalistic skills. Kids may not get quite the same benefits from its content, although budding journalists are likely to find plenty items that are of interest. But younger users will get an interesting look at current events that are happening in the world around them, and how they're being investigated and shared by mass media outlets. The site material may be meant for adults, likely ones who work within the news industry, but it can certainly spark some interesting conversations among younger users, and it may inspire them to consider the importance of being precise and honest in their day-to-day life.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how the news is covered and what it means to be impartial. Do you know the difference between facts and opinion?

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  • Readers can have a strong reaction to news coverage. What kind of civic action or reform might news stories initiate?

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  • An old journalistic saying points out there are two sides to every story. Read an article with your child to illustrate how reporters try to represent both views.

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Website details

For kids who love news

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