The number of daily and weekly newspaper employees stood at 455,000 people in 1990. By 2016, that number had fallen dramatically to just 173,000.
With more than a 60% reduction in the staffing of our nation’s newspapers over a period of just 25 years, the writing is on the wall. The newspaper business, already severely hampered in its ability to perform a crucial duty – to uncover the news and report it without bias, borders on extinction.
A free press is needed to inform and enlighten us, to champion justice and equity, to provide checks and balances to all government branches – legislative, judicial, and executive – and corporate powers and foreign entities.
Syndication, technological advances, decreased readership, the Internet and the merging or closing of a chunk of newspapers – not to mention decreased ad dollars forcing labor cuts – all conspired to injure journalism.
Who or what can help fill this void?
Check out www.ReportForAmerica.org. It’s an organization – a non-profit – that helps to get enough good people and to raise enough money to support its efforts. Early supporters include Google News Lab, The Lenfest Institute for Journalism, Knight Foundation, The Center for Investigating Reporting and Reveal Labs, and Solutions Journalism Network.
When the news media, particularly newspapers, shrink, it hurts authors. Fewer stories are dedicated to books and authors, with less ink for book previews. We need bigger and better journalism if books are to thrive.
Report for America is a new model to strengthen journalism, enrich communities, empower citizens and restore trust in media by developing and sustaining a new wave of journalists to serve local news organizations in under-covered corners of America.
Emerging journalists are selected by Report for America – based on their skill, character and commitment to public service journalism.
RFA corps members will report in local newsrooms across America, including newspaper, radio, TV, and digital outlets.
As an RFA newsroom, you may host between one and five reporters for a year at a time, covering stories and beats, important to your community and that would otherwise go uncovered.
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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at email@example.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent. This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”
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