“LOSING THE NEWS – The Decimation of Local Journalism…”

[Editor: The report below, “Losing the News,” is a really important work for our times.  My home town of Benicia, California, population around 28,000, has suffered cutbacks in all of our local news providers.  Our Benicia Herald is limping along with very little staff, prints on only 3 days per week.  Our next door neighbor, Vallejo, California, population around 122,000, was unable to sustain a Benicia reporter several years ago, and rarely covers news in Benicia.  The Contra Costa Times / East Bay Times quit covering Benicia and other small Bay Area communities long ago.  “News Deserts” are appearing all across the country.  “Losing the News” is a formidable analysis of the phenomenon, including important “big picture solutions” and recommendations.  The report is copyrighted and can’t be reproduced here. Check out the contents below and click to read the report at https://pen.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Losing-the-News-The-Decimation-of-Local-Journalism-and-the-Search-for-Solutions-Report.pdf  – R.S.]

LOSING THE NEWS
The Decimation of Local Journalism and the Search for Solutions

November 20, 2019, by PEN America

CONTENTS

LETTER 4
INTRODUCTION 5
WHAT IS A LOCAL NEWS ECOSYSTEM? 7
WHY LOCAL NEWS MATTERS 8
CASE STUDY: VIEW FROM SOUTHEASTERN N. CAROLINA  18
THE DECIMATION OF LOCAL NEWS   24
SYSTEMIC INEQUITY IN U.S. NEWS MEDIA  33
CASE STUDY: VIEW FROM DETROIT  37
INDUSTRY ADAPTATION AND INNOVATION  43
CASE STUDY: VIEW FROM DENVER  49
BIG PICTURE SOLUTIONS  56
RECOMMENDATIONS 76
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS 80
ENDNOTES 81

Read the report at https://pen.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Losing-the-News-The-Decimation-of-Local-Journalism-and-the-Search-for-Solutions-Report.pdf

Cover image: a decommissioned newspaper box abandoned in an alley in California; credit: Robert Alexander / Archive photos via Getty Images

The report was generously funded by Peter and Pam Barbey.

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