Michael Posner wrote an article for Forbes titled How Business Leaders Can Help Rescue Dying Local News.
« The economic outlook for local journalism in the U.S. is grim. Since 2004, more than 1,800 local newspapers have folded, leaving over 1,300 American communities without local news coverage. »
« To put it mildly, the business model for these newspapers is broken. By contrast, growth in online advertising is dramatic. Last year, for the first time, half of all advertising dollars spent globally were spent online, totaling more than $330 billion worldwide. This spending was concentrated mostly between Google and Facebook. The inevitable result of these shifts is that there are far fewer journalists, especially those reporting on local news. Nationwide, there are fewer than 38,000 people working as reporters, editors, and photographers, a decline of 47% from 2004. »
« While these are local challenges, they demand a national strategy. What is needed is the development of a domestic Marshall Plan to save local news, one that draws on the private sector, government, and philanthropy to achieve the desired result. While there are pros and cons of direct government funding, even in the short term, Congress should explore potential tax incentives to private investors involved in this vital sector. National business associations like the Business Roundtable or the U.S. Chamber of Commerce need to spearhead this national strategy. »
« Nothing less than our democracy is at stake. »