Journalists abandon comfort zone, embrace a very different America

Community news startups and bloggers have begun to fill in the gaps left by traditional media but is it enough?

Two women in Los Angeles are taking a different approach: Devin Browne and Kara Mears have moved in with a Mexican family in the MacArthur Park/Westlake neighborhood of Los Angeles. They’re renting an entryway in a townhouse, shared with 8 other people. They’re learning Spanish. Their new neighbors are suspected gangsters (at least they claim to be – on MySpace). They’ve left the L.A. that’s familiar to them to fully immerse themselves in a world most don’t understand.

Browne and Mears have set up The Entryway, a blog that fuses photojournalism and first-person writing, to explore these very two distinct realities. They will also be providing traditional community reporting for various outlets, while holding down day jobs to pay rent.

Zach Behrens, of the LAist, writes:

The Entryway is one of Los Angeles’ most important journalistic efforts at the moment and as immigration policy begins to take center stage, it will be one of the country’s, too.

The Entryway is supported through, a nonprofit community funded reporting startup and 2009 Knight News Challenge winner.

Note: A clause has been removed from this post. A related comment by Knight Foundation is posted below. The Entryway is not a Knight Foundation-funded project.

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