Sunday, April 5, 2009

Should Regional Daily Newspapers Survive

A March 18, 2009 article by John Nichols and Robert W. McChesney in "The Nation" calls for (among other things) a $200.00 tax credit for Americans to encourage them to subscribe to newspapers and thus help to save the "great regionly daily" papers in America.


What''s really worth rescuing?

What do large regional newspapers do that is so important the government needs to rescue them?

Send your answers to

The Nichols/McChesney article is short (four pages on the internet), but they used the word "crisis" fourteen times in their article.

Analysis of a "crisis"

What's the crisis?

Seriously, Nichols and McChesney are supposed to be "professional" journalists?

The American Heritage Dictionary defines crisis as follows -- "An unstable condition, as in political, social, or economic affairs, involving an impending abrupt or decisive change"

Is this a bad thing?

We don't think the Nichols/McChesney article covered this topic very well, because they didn't really talk about essential functions of regional daily newspapers -- functions that would be difficult or impossible to duplicate?

What is the real job of a newspaper?

We think a newspaper is supposed to gather and distribute news.

So where is the problem? If the New York Times closes its doors, what will happen?

Disagreement with the Nichols McChesney Position

A number of publications, bloggers, and just plain old private citizens disagree with the Nichols/McChesney position. Here are a few.

McClatchy Watch ( -- This blog is mainly about the spectacular train wreck at The Sacramento Bee and its parent company, the McClatchy Company.

The Danville Register & Bee - Life at a Media General Newspaper ( -- Life at the Danville Register & Bee...when a male reporter at a Media General newspaper filmed the breasts of local business women without their knowledge or consent and showed the video around the newsroom - several people objected. We were all fired. He was not. This is what happened. I'm one of those journalists who was fired for taking a stand. Why am I writing this? Because.... Well-Behaved Women Rarely Make History.

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