A Plan to Save U.S. Newspapers
I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but amidst all the other economic bad news, the U.S. newspapers are in big trouble. The recession/depression is the immediate problem, but the longterm bad news for newspapers is that their business model (sell advertising which reaches large amounts of people because of the paper’s wide circulation) no longer works. Circulations are plummeting as people read the news online, watch it on TV (network and/or cable), listen to it on the radio, etc. All for free. So, many newspapers are going bankrupt or ceasing publication. Others are laying off reporters and staff, cutting back local reporting (the heart of their readership), etc.
None of this is good for our democracy. We need a free press. We need more in-depth reporting than TV or radio can provide and we need more local reporting than online sources provide. Enter, Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) and the Newspaper Revitalization Act. Sen. Cardin’s plan to save our free press would allow those newspapers who wanted to do so to become non-profit enterprises, like Public radio and TV. The idea is to save the local reporting.
I hope it works.
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