Small and regional newspapers are being shuttered, merged with larger papers or acquired by non-news entities seemingly interested in eking out a last bit of profit. Journalism across the country, especially local journalism, is struggling in its role: to provide citizens actionable information so they can make the best possible choices in their lives and in their local government.
Many of the problems faced by journalism are related to the shift to an online world. While many of us (myself included) prefer reading a physical paper, we must recognize that it is not the future. There are benefits to online news: It is much more accessible to people with a wide range of disabilities; distribution is cheap and instantaneous; and for the reporter, instead of a daily deadline, a story develops at its natural pace and is published when it’s ready.