Indiana to Get State-Run Media

Conservatives love to quip that the allegedly liberal media is “state-run” (when a Democrat is in office, of course), but now one of their own is creating a genuine state-run news outlet. Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, a potential presidential candidate, is doing exactly that.

Gov. Mike Pence is starting a state-run taxpayer-funded news outlet that will make pre-written news stories available to Indiana media, as well as sometimes break news about his administration, according to documents obtained by The Indianapolis Star.

Pence is planning in late February to launch “Just IN,” a website and news outlet that will feature stories and news releases written by state press secretaries and is being overseen by a former Indianapolis Star reporter, Bill McCleery.

“At times, Just IN will break news — publishing information ahead of any other news outlet. Strategies for determining how and when to give priority to such ‘exclusive’ coverage remain under discussion,” according to a question-and-answer sheet distributed last week to communications directors for state agencies.

The Pence news outlet will take stories written by state communications directors and publish them on its website. Stories will “range from straightforward news to lighter features, including personality profiles.”…

One target audience for the governor’s stories would be smaller newspapers that have only a few staffers. But not everyone thinks the approach best serves the public interest.

“I think it’s a ludicrous idea,” said Jack Ronald, publisher of one such newspaper, the Portland Commercial Review. “I have no problem with public information services — the Purdue University agriculture extension service does a great job. But the notion of elected officials presenting material that will inevitably have a pro-administration point of view is antithetical to the idea of an independent press.”

Ya think?

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  • Mr Ed

    The government has no reason to lie so they could call their publication Truth, or maybe spice it up a little and use a foreign word for truth maybe Russian.

  • raven

    Isn’t this Socialism and Commie-ism?

    Well, yes it is, state owned and controlled news outlets.

    This strikes me as somehow illegal but I’m not sure why. Perhaps because they are using taxpayer funds for partisan political purposes.

  • kantalope

    I do miss Pravda – that was always so much fun to read. So informative.

  • ebotebo

    Pence is such a prick!

  • rationalinks

    Raven, it’s only Socialism and Communism when Liberals do it. When Conservatives do it it’s Freedom, and Merica!, and Freedom!

  • Loqi

    During the Bush administration, I suspected Fox News was government run. Eventually I decided it was really the other way around. Nice to see an enterprising Republican trying to reverse this perversion of the natural order.

  • lorn

    Another case of Pravda envy.

    The GOP has its official/unofficial media outlets, Fox et al, but Pence wants his own to play with.

  • http://mostlyrational.net tacitus

    Pence is now claiming it was all a misunderstanding and that the site will just be an archive of state government press releases. Sometimes ridicule and mockery work as intended.

  • notruescott

    Just INane?

    Just INJustice?

    Just IN the government’s pocket?

    We report. And decide.

  • observer

    How is this different from PR?

  • sezme

    Uh, is this the same Pence who obsesses over small government?