Tasmanian Times


Journalism is foundering, but is there a light at the end of the tunnel?

Journalism is foundering, but is there a light at the end of the tunnel?


The question most asked by journalists just now, aside from the routine one about Brexit, is how their trade will be funded in future. Indeed, at local level, there is increasing concern about whether there will be any trade at all.

Look at the state of the big three regional publishers. JPI Media, owner of the i newspaper, the Scotsman, The Yorkshire Post and about 200 more titles, was founded last November from the ashes of Johnston Press after it went into administration. It began this year by announcing a series of cover price rises and followed up with a review aimed at relocating offices and merging newsrooms (a euphemism for reducing journalistic staff).

Newsquest, publisher of 165 “news brands” across Britain, including the Herald in Glasgow, the South Wales Argus and the Echo in Southampton, is owned by the US media giant Gannett. It is now the target of a hostile takeover bid by a company known for aggressive cutting of jobs, which is ultimately controlled by a New York hedge fund without a shred of interest in journalistic output.

Drip by drip by drip, the print “platforms” disappear and with them go journalists, thereby restricting the replacement online coverage, some of which, it should be said, remains of excellent quality. When the government’s review into the sustainability of high-quality journalism was launched last year, it was claimed that newspapers produced more original journalism than broadcasters and websites combined.

That review, led by Dame Frances Cairncross, is continuing to take evidence amid what is rightly described as a crisis. She will surely have noted the latest news that old media’s digital competitors, based in the US but also attempting to serve British audiences, are finding it difficult to fund journalism. BuzzFeed is to cut 15% of its staff, while Verizon Media is seeking 7% cutbacks at newsrooms such as Huffington Post, AOL and Yahoo …



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  1. Simon Warriner

    February 5, 2019 at 8:20 pm

    Before forming any opinion on anything published in The Guardian, readers will be well served by having a look at this site …


  2. Mike

    February 5, 2019 at 7:42 pm

    I have to disagree, I don’t think there has been a better time than now for Journalism.

    You do have tell the truth, however!

    In the Internet age it is very easy to get caught out lying, even if it might take several months for the truth to come out. The trouble with those mainstream media outlets listed is that they are just propaganda and advertising dressed up to look like news .. and people have woken up to that.

    There are many independent journalists who run their own operations using subscriptions and donations without putting their work behind a pay wall. It just needs to be good quality.

    If they are not brave enough to allow the public to comment on their articles then it probably shows that the articles are rubbish and have factual errors that are easy to point out.

    For an example of how the mainstream media has been caught out lying, watch “The 2nd Annual REAL Fake News Awards” by James Corbett. The Guardian gets special mention.


    As for those opinion Journalists who have been laid off after their organisation was caught out lying, why don’t they learn to code?

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