Welcome to our new, improved website!

the Washington News CouncilPlease come in! Take a look around. Make yourself at home.

We have completely redesigned the WNC website. (It’s about time, some say…)

Our goal is to make this site timely, engaging, interactive, helpful and fun! We hope it will become a key forum for discussion of news-media matters in Washington state – including ethics, accuracy, fairness, issues, people and trends.

Check out these features on our new site:

  • WNC Community – Join our online community and be part of stimulating Group and Forum discussions.
  • Latest Topics – Weigh in on current media debates – and suggest new ones.
  • WNC Blog – Read our recent blog posts and please add your comments.
  • NewsTrust – Visit this WNC partner site, then start submitting and reviewing stories from Washington state news media.
  • Twitter Stream – Follow “tweets” from savvy media people statewide.
  • WNC Projects – Scan our expanding list of projects and give us feedback.
  • Washington News Lab – Help us encourage innovative new media experiments.
  • Complaint Process – If you have been the subject of inaccurate, unfair or unethical media stories, consider filing a formal complaint and using our effective process.
  • TAO of Journalism – Take the “TAO Pledge” to be Transparent, Accountable and Open, and display the “TAO Seal” on your website.
  • Supporting Members – Become a “NewsHound” or “News Junkie” and help the WNC continue our vital work to promote media excellence statewide.
  • 100 Friends of WNC – Join our distinguished group of friends and receive special benefits, including two VIP tickets to our Gridiron West Dinner.
  • Archives Page – Review the WNC’s accomplishments over the past 12 years.
  • Gridiron West Dinner – Reserve your tickets or tables for our 12th annual gala event, a fun-filled “toast” to five former Mayors of Seattle on Nov. 12, 2010!

Why are we doing this? Because the news media have changed dramatically since the Washington News Council was founded in 1998. Back then, most people got their news from newspapers, television, radio, magazines and maybe a few newsletters.

Today, in what some call the “new news ecosystem,” people also get news from an astonishing – and constantly evolving – array of online sources. New blogs, neighborhood websites, news aggregators, RSS feeds, podcasts, streaming video – as well as social networks such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn – provide a 24/7 flood of information.

And countless people now create their own news and information outlets. As Scott Gant’s prescient 2007 book put it: “We’re All Journalists Now” – at least potentially.

Journalism is a profession in the midst of a revolutionary transition, and no one can say for sure what lies ahead. So it’s time to “reinvent” the WNC. We’ve also used the words reboot, reset, refresh, restart, reinvigorate, and redo. Whatever the term, we definitely want to hear your comments, feedback and suggestions.

Join in. Speak up. Sound off. Talk back. News – and everything about it – is no longer a lecture, but a conversation.

NOTE: Our work is made possible by a generous $100,000 “challenge grant” from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which we matched with $100,000 from other valued donors. And if we raise another $100,000 in 2010, that will be matched by the Foundation in 2011.


About John Hamer
JOHN HAMER is President of the Washington News Council, an independent forum for media fairness that he co-founded in 1998. Hamer was formerly Associate Editorial-Page Editor at The Seattle Times and previously Associate Editor with Congressional Quarterly/Editorial Research Reports in Washington, D.C. Read more about John or read John's blog posts.


  1. Jericho says:

    I like the look of the site. Very easy to read…

    • johnhamer says:

      Thanks, Jericho. Hope you’ll “join the WNC community” and begin participating in our group discussions. This site will work best if we get lots of thoughtful, informed, concerned people to become members and start engaging in discussion of media-related issues. Let us hear from you!