Byline: Roy Greenslade
RADICAL plans by Britain's leading news agency, the Press Association, to introduce "public service reporting" are well advanced. I understand that PA is days away from securing an agreement on funding from a charitable source.
Once the money is available, adverts will be placed to recruit staff for the pilot project in the Merseyside region in company with Liverpool's main newspaper publisher, Trinity Mirror.
The idea is that the new team of public service reporters will then put up their copy on a dedicated portal that will allow any news outlet, whether it be a Trinity Mirror title, a national paper or an individual blogging outfit, to publish the content free of charge.
It is an imaginative attempt to overcome the worrying prospect of courts, councils and other public bodies going unreported as traditional news organisations cut back on their reporting staffs.