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Shop Talk is a weekly panel discussion about journalism issues. This week’s program featured Will Buss, who teaches in the Department of Broadcasting and Journalism at Western Illinois University and advises the student editors at the Western Courier, the students at student radio station The Dog, and the WIU chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists; Rajvee Subramanian, who teaches in the Department of Broadcasting and Journalism at Western Illinois University; and TSPR News Director Rich Egger.

Activism isn’t journalism

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The Washington Post reported that when Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker’s campaign bus came to Normal recently, the local conservative talk radio station covered the event, dutifully informing its audience on social media that “counter protesters were in attendance.”

But, as the Post pointed out, the “counter protesters” were the radio station’s employees.

The story said the talk radio station Cities 92.9 has upended the traditional media ecosystem in this part of central Illinois with an unusual mix of hyperlocal news coverage — such as crime, weather and the like — and election misinformation.

The station’s managers told the newspaper that their coverage serves as a necessary counter to the liberal bias they see in the established local media outlets.

Shop Talk is a weekly panel discussion about journalism issues.  This week’s program featured Will Buss, who teaches in the Department of Broadcasting and Journalism at Western Illinois University and advises the student editors at the Western Courier, the students at student radio station The Dog, and the WIU chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists; Rajvee Subramanian, who teaches in the Department of Broadcasting and Journalism at Western Illinois University; and TSPR News Director Rich Egger.

Rich is TSPR's News Director.