Behold a Giant Muh

I Could Not Have Been More Wrong

Two years ago I saw a television ad for what I thought might be the answer to the decline of the newspaper industry, The Daily.com. The Daily was the first all-electronic “newspaper,” a product produced and delivered entirely for tablets like the iPad and Kindle Fire, and by extension, smart phones.

I thought this was a brilliant idea. I thought surely the problems of printing on paper – the cost, the lack of interest from younger people, the growing irrelevance of a product updated once a day or less – would all be addressed in this sleek new concept.

I believe, as do most journalists, that without real, dedicated, professional journalists and a vehicle for disseminating their product, freedom and democracy itself is in danger. After all, when an oppressive regime takes over a region or nation, what do they do first? Take over the news media.

I write this as yet another national breaking news story is unfolding, and I can tell you exactly where I got this news first: my phone. And I didn’t pay for that piece of news. I surfed around and found it on a free site (in this case NBCnews.com, but if it wasn’t there, I would have gotten it from CNN or CBS or some other outlet.) I don’t, however, regard television with much higher regard than I do non-media like Twitter and Facebook. And as much as I liked The Daily.com and supported its ideals, I did not subscribe. I guess my own idealism is just that, idealism. Am I fundamentally hypocritical about how I get my own news?

Where does this leave newspapers? If not from the so-called Fourth Estate, where can we get accountable, reliable, in-depth news reporting? I will ponder this as I examine where my own life and career lead in the coming months and years.

From TheDaily.com web site: Why is The Daily shutting down? The Daily was an incredible vehicle for innovation and we’re proud of the groundbreaking work we did but, ultimately, we were not able to grow as large an audience as we’d hoped.
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