PASADENA, California (AP) -- The job posting was a head-scratcher: "We seek a newspaper journalist based in India to report on the city government and political scene of Pasadena, California, USA."
A reporter half a world away covering local street-light contracts and sewer repairs? A reporter who has never gotten closer to Pasadena than the telecast of the Rose Bowl parade?
Outsourcing first claimed manufacturing jobs, then hit services such as technical support, airline reservations and tax preparation. Now comes the next frontier: local journalism.
James Macpherson, editor and publisher of the two-year-old Web site pasadenanow.com, acknowledged it sounds strange to have journalists in India cover news in this wealthy city just outside Los Angeles.
I'm a little curious; how is it that someone in India can get the news in a town from overseas, and then publish it in that same town because the local people can't get the news themselves? That isn't journalism, most of us blogging can do that much without having to put forth hardly any effort. So how does that equate to a job as a journalist? I don't see how someone from another culture can report news when they are not even there to see it firsthand, and may misinterpret what they read, which is already coming to them second- or third-hand. It's a poor way to run a paper, if you ask me.