Protecting Local Media

Washington Post

04/04/2019 - 09:00 to 11:15

The statistics are staggering. Since 2004, more than 1,800 city and small town newspapers in the U.S. have folded and the number of reporters covering local news has decreased by fifty-percent. “News deserts” -- areas where zero or little local coverage exists -- are cropping up all around the country. Simultaneously, public trust in media continues to erode--fueled by divisive political culture, the rise in opinion journalism and the pernicious effect of misinformation and fake news in the internet age. Interestingly, in markets where there is a long standing, robust local news presence, those outlets have continuously earned the highest marks of public confidence. That trust is now more vital than ever to holding our public officials accountable, exposing wrongdoing where it exists, and giving context and texture to local concerns that affect communities and individuals alike.

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