Off With Your Masthead

The first rough draft of history is getting rougher. While New York is known as the city that never sleeps, its newspaper industry sleeps with the fishes. How bad is the crisis that has led to dramatic reductions in the number of reporters covering local news? The center of the media world is now being described as a local news desert. And if things are that bad in NYC, just imagine how bad they are in smaller towns where local news coverage is even more absent. This week, parent company Tronc cut the already decimated staff at the NY Daily News in half. From WaPo: The city that never sleeps finds that it’s running out of reporters to report. “Local news is a direct link between a community’s safety and preservation, whether it’s putting a spotlight on the need for a new stoplight on the corner or on a corrupt city council person. We don’t have the legs to do that in New York anymore. The community doesn’t have the watchdogs it once had.” (This is a man bites watchdog story…)

+ Harry Siegel in the NYDN: “The thing I love about local news is that it doesn’t scale. It happens one court hearing or campaign or crime at a time so that you can fairly try and connect political decisions to individual people, the life of the city to that of its inhabitants.”

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