Friday, November 20, 2009

Fish for Friday - Update on Fishery Resources on the Web in Alaska

Back in March 2008, Progressive Alaska posted an article about fishery issue coverage by Alaska media, called Writing About Commercial Fishery Issues in the Alaska Press. A lot has changed in that 20-month period.

The most widely read fisheries reporter in Alaska, Wesley Loy, left the Anchorage Daily News in mid-2009, in their big buyout deal. He has since started his own blogs.

Deckboss posts several articles per week and continues the modality Loy carried in his blog entries at the ADN. Deckboss isn't progressive, but Loy keeps up on issues and events.

Loy's other fisheries blog is called The Brig. In it he cites citations, violations and trials in the industry.

Along with Loy, Laine Welch's Fish Radio and her articles for Sitnews are valuable. Like Loy, she isn't progressive, but is quite knowledgeable. Fish Radio often has a new program every weekday.

The Alaska Report is the most valuable resource that also contains many articles that question the industrial paradigm that is on the verge of ruining the last remaining high-volume offshore fisheries on the planet. So, in that sense, its articles are currently the most viable. Reporters Stephen Taufen, John Enge and Terry Haines often contribute.

Enge and Haines have their own blogs. Neither are very active, but both sometimes post excellent articles.

Enge's blog, Alaska Cafe, hasn't posted a new article since August. Too bad.

Haines blog, The Rogue Wave, writes from an important and often neglected perspective - that of the deckhand, a normal crew person.

Two new blogs are also progressive and question the wisdom of many current fishery policies. No Trawl Zone is very critical of deepwater trawl practices and National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration policies as they now stand.

Tholepin similarly highlights the unsustainable fallacies of these policies. Additionally, Tholepin has an open reward for information on bycatch criminality.

Since Wesley Loy left the Anchorage Daily News there hasn't been a clear fishery article policy there. Kyle Hopkins, Richard Mauer, Elizabeth Bluemink and others have contributed fisheries articles, but there has yet to emerge an editorial pattern there indicating the ADN knows very well how to fill the gap created by Loy's departure.

Alaska Public Radio Network has long been able to take advantage of having many coastal contributing stations when it comes to important fishery stories. Instead of giving $600,000 to the Alaska House in Soho on Manhattan Island this coming year, they might think about expanding fishery coverage at APRN. This past year, as other media outlets in Alaska, especially print media, crashed, APRN has held rather steady. They appear to be running at least four important fishery articles a week on Alaska News Nightly, sometimes far more.

APRN's reports, though not necessarily progressive, sometimes ask tough questions from State or Federal fishery administrators, or on subjects related to fishery sustainability. Their coverage of the Rick Steiner issue at the University of Alaska, compared to that of the Anchorage Daily News is a case in point on how much more APRN is able to perform statewide right now than the ADN.

Throughout the winter, spring and summer crises on the Lower Yukon and on the Kuskokwim River, Alaska Newspapers' many outlets contributed fine articles. With papers in Dutch Harbor, Dillingham and Bethel AN's outlets combined Western Alaska offshore and onshore issues as well as APRN.

1 comment:

alaskapi said...

Good list Phil!
Don't forget the Nome Nugget- quality coverage of issues in that area...