Coming soon: CWN unveils a new approach to Catholic news coverage

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | Aug 25, 2017

For more than 20 years now, Catholic World News (CWN) has been presenting daily headline stories in the same format. That’s about to change.

In 1996 CWN began providing readers with short summaries of the top stories that would interest Catholic readers (and readers interested in Catholic affairs). We thought we were providing a valuable service, covering developments that other outlets ignored, and correcting some of the errors that cropped up in coverage in the secular media. We still believe that service is valuable.

But the world of online news coverage has changed dramatically since 1996. Today it’s very easy for any reader to find the latest news—about the Catholic Church or about any other topic—by searching the web. What’s not so easy is distinguishing between reliable news coverage and sensational accounts, between balanced perspectives and biased reporting. So even when the news is available on other outlets, CWN serves an important editorial function: separating the wheat from the chaff.

To emphasize that function, in coming days CWN will unveil a different approach to daily news coverage, putting the emphasis on our unique perspective. Here’s what you’ll find:

  • CWN will continue to offer readers a line-up of the most important headline stories every weekday. In fact we’ll greatly expand the number of headline stories on our home page.
  • When a news story that appears on another outlet is substantially accurate, we’ll provide a link, sending readers directly to that story. When the story contains an error, or a perspective that calls out for correction, we’ll include an editor’s note, letting readers know what they should understand before they begin reading the news account.
  • Of course CWN will also continue providing our own reports, when we uncover breaking news or when other outlets do not give a topic adequate coverage.

The editorial goal of CWN remains unchanged; we seek to offer readers with an accurate view of world affairs, from a distinctly Catholic perspective. With our new format we will help readers to discover the enormous resources of information that are already available online, while guiding them through the pitfalls of inaccurate coverage.

For the past few weeks we have been working behind the scenes on the details of our revised system, hoping to discover all the “bugs” before we make it public. We’re already excited about the amount of information we can convey, using this new approach. We hope that our readers will be excited, too, when we launch our revised news pages.

Stay tuned!

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at CatholicCulture.org. See full bio.

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