The now-annual analysis of the Diamond Valley’s 10 most-trusted news sources is in, and The Watsonia Bugle has made a surprising move up the rankings. After slipping as low as ninth on the list last year, the Bugle’s improvement seems to have more to do with the survival of the fittest than any noticeable change to editorial integrity.

In fact, the most recent top 10 list is arguably more interesting for who is not on it, than the order of those chosen as the most trustworthy. More broadly, the rankings indicate an obvious shift away from traditional mastheads towards rampantly rumour-mongering Facebook community groups. Rapid adoption of social media, combined with seemingly unscalable paywalls, means people are turning their backs on publications like the Herald Sun and the Diamond Valley Leader.

The Herald Sun’s obvious inability to read the room and support Melburnians through a tough 2020 seems to have caught up with them, as they’ve slipped out of the top 10 for the first time ever. Meanwhile, the DV Leader’s sad loss of a print format, even sadder amalgamation with the Whittlesea Leader, and its odd recent social media strategy of basically just posting about the absolute worst of society – plus daily court listings at the Heidelberg Magistrates’ Court – has forced it off the list too.

It’s a bold new frontier for local news, and we’re all for it. The latest top 10 is:

  1. Monty Life 3094.
  2. Watsonia Community Voice.
  3. Jonno’s mum Barb from down the street.
  4. Eltham Life 3094.
  5. The Watsonia Bugle.
  6. Steve’s Aunty from over in Greensy.
  7. Macleod Life.
  8. Greensborough and Surrounds Photo, History and Social Site.
  9. Diamond Creek Community Voice.
  10. Banyule Banner.