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The Internet Is Killing Local News, Says the FCC

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the locality-locality-locality dept.

United States 271

Art3x writes "The rise of the Internet has led to a 'shortage of local, professional, accountability reporting' (Here's the AP's version) says a 475-page report by the FCC, and the consequences could be 'more government waste, more local corruption,' 'less effective schools' and other problems. Even though there are more media choices today than ever, newspapers have been laying off reporters, leaving a gap that is yet to be filled."

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Yeah, that's it (4, Insightful)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416728)

It's not that the majority of local businesses are multinational franchises with no need for local advertising.

Re:Yeah, that's it (4, Informative)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416784)

Lets see, if I make a trip outside my local area, working for a multinational. Am I going to want to go to the local news company's website (so the internet is promoting local news), or am I going to go to another news website, although both obviously don't mean reading the local news or watching tv news.

Is that really a surprise in this day and age?

Meanwhile, shitty/shoddy reporting has killed news in general, not shortages of staff. Considering that they wont' even cover tough topics pretty much sealed the deal for any form of regular news website being considered legitimate or worth a glance. I'd sooner read fark than new york times, since at least I can get more info from fark, such as when they actually covered iran protests and NYT/CNN/Fox news/ABC/NBC/AP were nowhere to be found. Only Al Jazeera has been stepping up as a news org.

Re:Yeah, that's it (5, Interesting)

tripleevenfall (1990004) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416958)

Meanwhile, shitty/shoddy reporting has killed news in general, not shortages of staff. Considering that they wont' even cover tough topics pretty much sealed the deal for any form of regular news website being considered legitimate or worth a glance. I'd sooner read fark than new york times, since at least I can get more info from fark, such as when they actually covered iran protests and NYT/CNN/Fox news/ABC/NBC/AP were nowhere to be found. Only Al Jazeera has been stepping up as a news org.

Personally, I have long since ignored local news media outlets because of the level of bias they all seem to carry. There are more choices for national and international news, you can find more sources online and sources based overseas, but here in America most of the media is pushing the same agenda - why would I waste my time watching what are essentially 20 minute news-based political cartoons?

The internet didn't kill local news or newspapers, they killed themselves by deciding to stop reporting news and start shaping and creating news.

Re:Yeah, that's it - SOLUTION - TWO WORDS! (0)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417276)

Ron Burgundy

Don't forget the inherent bias of the communities. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416960)

While you're talking about print or local TV media, we've also seen a large rise in the number of social media news aggregator web sites. I'm talking about Slashdot, Digg, reddit, and Hacker News.

The communities that have formed around news aggregators often have a very specific set of biases that affect the news items that are highly ranked. It doesn't matter which aggregator this is, either.

For example, there's a very significant pro-Apple bias at Digg, and also at reddit. If you post something that's not absolutely positive about Apple or one of their products, you're often "downmodded" into oblivion. While your opinion is probably perfectly valid, and in fact may be reality, such a viewpoint does not match well with the biases and precognitions of the fanatics at such social media sites. Their attempts at censorship will likely lead to anyone with a different viewpoint quickly leaving such sites. This reinforces the bias, making the situation even worse.

Re:Don't forget the inherent bias of the communiti (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417026)

Whining about biased sites while posting to Slashdot? LOL *head asplodes*

While your opinion is probably perfectly valid, and in fact may be reality, such a viewpoint does not match well with the biases and precognitions of the fanatics at such social media sites.

Just because someone said something negative about Apple does not mean it is probably valid. It is very likely to not be valid considering the rabid anti-Apple nuts. All you've done is expose your own bias.

Re:Don't forget the inherent bias of the communiti (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417072)

The Slashdot community doesn't pretend to be unbiased like the Digg and reddit communities often do. The anti-Microsoft/pro-Linux/pro-OSS bias that is common here is pretty well-known. Hell, the Slashdot readers have almost no say on the stories that are posted, and the moderation system isn't available even to many long-time community members.

The Digg and reddit communities, on the other hand, have always tried to portray themselves as more open and "free" than more traditional sites like Slashdot. The ability of just about anyone to moderate stories and comments is much greater there. The bias is there, too, but the communities there tend to turn a blind eye to it.

The GP mentions Apple, but it holds true for other stuff, as well. Reddit's /r/politics is really bad. Unless you submit stories and comments promoting their preferred strain of academic pseudo-libertarianism bullshit, you'll be shunned and ridiculed, and in some cases probably even banned from such subreddits. Regardless of one's stance or opinions, the community bias does exist at those kind of sites.

Re:Don't forget the inherent bias of the communiti (1)

magamiako1 (1026318) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417176)

They are biased against stupidity, though once in a while you can tell when someone has paid off an organization to rank their stories highly (typically when major Republican news gets to the top of the front pages of these sites).

You can tell that those are flukes/artificially increased because it's not normal when a Pro-Right article makes it to the front page of Reddit. And while there's a lot of "pro right-wing stuff" going on, it's always the *big* articles that make it there, never the small stuff--always the large, provocative things.

Either way, if you think it's biased because the people there are more calculated and logical, then I dunno what to tell you :P

Re:Don't forget the inherent bias of the communiti (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417278)

"It is very likely to not be valid considering the rabid anti-Apple nuts. All you've done is expose your own bias."

And now, you have exposed your own bias as well. Negative comments about Apple (and others) are just as likely to be valid as invalid.

Re:Don't forget the inherent bias of the communiti (1)

lucm (889690) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417332)

> Just because someone said something negative about Apple does not mean it is probably valid. It is very likely to not be valid considering the rabid anti-Apple nuts. All you've done is expose your own bias.

My guess is that you wrote this on you Macbook (if you had used your iPad the text would be messed-up because of the shitty spellcheck)

Government waste is already here,,, (2)

clm1970 (1728766) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416734)

Seems to me the FCC doing a 475 page report on something that was pretty obvious is Government waste.

Re:475 Page (5, Informative)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416820)

It's not a waste, since that's not the results of the report. Let me help out.

How the Internet Has Improved Journalism
---
Greater Depth
Improved Quality of Commentary and Analysis
Enabling Citizen Engagement
Speed and Ease
Expanding Hyperlocal Coverage
Serving Highly Specific Interests
Cheaper Content Distribution
Cheaper Content Creation
Direct Access to Community and Civic News

Sound different from TFS?

Yep. Same report. Time to fork slashdot to make it less inflammatory. They took the only concern, "lack of clarity how well trained bloggers are" and made it into a siren favoring Big Media.

Re:475 Page (4, Insightful)

Demonoid-Penguin (1669014) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417064)

It's not a waste, since that's not the results of the report. Let me help out.

How the Internet Has Improved Journalism --- Greater Depth Improved Quality of Commentary and Analysis Enabling Citizen Engagement Speed and Ease Expanding Hyperlocal Coverage Serving Highly Specific Interests Cheaper Content Distribution Cheaper Content Creation Direct Access to Community and Civic News

Sound different from TFS?

Yep. Same report. Time to fork slashdot to make it less inflammatory. They took the only concern, "lack of clarity how well trained bloggers are" and made it into a siren favoring Big Media.

Time to insert a Bill Hicks quote - I'll leave it to those with brains to work out the relevance to TFA:-

By the way, if anyone here is in advertising or marketing, kill yourself. Thank you, thank you. Just a little thought. I'm just trying to plant seeds. Maybe one day they'll take root. I don't know. You try. You do what you can. Kill yourselves. Seriously though, if you are, do. No really, there's no rationalisation for what you do, and you are Satan's little helpers, OK? Kill yourselves, seriously. You're the ruiner of all things good. Seriously, no, this is not a joke. "There's gonna be a joke coming..." There's no fucking joke coming, you are Satan's spawn, filling the world with bile and garbage, you are fucked and you are fucking us, kill yourselves, it's the only way to save your fucking soul. Kill yourself, kill yourself, kill yourself now. Now, back to the show.

"You know what Bill's doing now, he's going for the righteous indignation dollar, that's a big dollar, a lot of people are feeling that indignation, we've done research, huge market. He's doing a good thing." Godammit, I'm not doing that, you scumbags, quit putting a godamn dollar sign on every fucking thing on this planet!

Re:475 Page (1)

joebagodonuts (561066) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417224)

Any Hicks reference needs to be modded up. +1 insightful

Re:475 Page (1)

Demonoid-Penguin (1669014) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417328)

Any Hicks reference needs to be modded up. +1 insightful

Here have some more - there's at least one for *every* situation. And why not "We pay for life with death - so everything in between should be free" A man who *lived* life and never backed down despite having a leg broken and a gun pointed at his head.

We are the facilitators of our own creative evolution. ~ Bill Hicks

Even for death:-

I left in love, in laughter, and in truth and wherever truth, love and laughter abide, I am there in spirit. [wikipedia.org]

It's just a ride and we can change it any time we want. It's only a choice. No effort, no work, no job, no savings and money, a choice, right now, between fear and love. The eyes of fear want you to put bigger locks on your door, buy guns, close yourself off. The eyes of love instead see all of us as one.

Re:475 Page (1)

Idbar (1034346) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417164)

"serving highly specific interests" sounds like one to be really worried about, like a double edged sword.

it is a shame too. (3, Insightful)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416736)

Well, the problem with citizen journalism is that unless you've got enough eyes peering onto your site to somehow support some sort of revenue stream, you're going to be spending half your day at work, the other half doing reporting and you're going to be pretty burnt out from all of it.

This is the advantage of professional journalists, they get to eat because of their work.

Re:it is a shame too. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416868)

Well, the problem with citizen journalism is that unless you've got enough eyes peering onto your site to somehow support some sort of revenue stream, you're going to be spending half your day at work, the other half doing reporting and you're going to be pretty burnt out from all of it.

This is the advantage of professional journalists, they get to eat because of their work.

They gave up a long time ago, and now they're paying the price. Rather that doing journalism like a profession, they went for the lazy option and reduced news to celebrity gossip, and even using forum posts and twitter as items within their pointless articles. Tough titties, these "journalist" are getting exactly what the deserve.

Re:it is a shame too. (1, Insightful)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417254)

They gave up a long time ago, and now they're paying the price

So if there was a quality newspaper in your jurisdiction doing hard reporting and research, employing professionals earning a good salary, you'd subscribe to it? You'd pay, I dunno, $300 per year for this newspaper? And all your friends would too?

Re:it is a shame too. (1, Flamebait)

avgjoe62 (558860) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417352)

Somehow, everyone these days have become lazy. Reporters are now lazy. Teachers are lazy, working only until 4 PM and getting half the year off. Firemen are lazy and overpaid, just sitting around the firehouse playing cards. Politicians are lazy, just interested in expensive trips and chasing women. Illegal immigrants are lazy, walking across the border here so they can live the high life with food stamps and free medical care at the expense of hard-working legal citizens. Policeman are lazy, because they aren't out there arresting all those millions and millions of illegal immigrants instead of just standing around the station house, watching traffic cameras. Yep, except for those millionaires working hard, investing their money so people can get jobs in China or India, it seems that the only people working hard these days are radio talk show hosts, who have become super busy the last few years pointing out how lazy everyone else is these days...

Re:it is a shame too. (3, Interesting)

paiute (550198) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416876)

Well, the problem with citizen journalism is that unless you've got enough eyes peering onto your site to somehow support some sort of revenue stream, you're going to be spending half your day at work, the other half doing reporting and you're going to be pretty burnt out from all of it.

This is the advantage of professional journalists, they get to eat because of their work.

On the other hand, a citizen journalist is going to be less careful about sources and fact checking. The citizen journalist is going to blog their suspicions and air unfounded allegations. A low signal-to-noise compared to a legit newpaper, but a lot of tip of the iceberg stuff which might appear earlier.

Remember that the two-newpaper town is only the news paradigm we can remember. Until about the time Hearst figured out how to make money out of buying up papers, there were hundreds of small run papers, many full of partisan vitriol. It was the internet without a net.

Re:it is a shame too. (3, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416914)

Depends on the source and it depends on how they present it.

I take great time to fact check, ensure human sources are valid and have proof of their whistleblowing, and provide all documentation procured from the agencies as evidence.

Just because some bloggers don't, doesn't mean that signal to noise ratio is high, it just means you aren't paying attention to the right sources.

----

As for making money and burning out. Yeah, it sucks. My site makes some money (and rarely any from political posts) but I don't do it for that. I do it because I enjoy the topic, I enjoy doing data analysis, and I like having a hobby.

YMMV.

Re:it is a shame too. (3, Interesting)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416984)

a citizen journalist is going to be less careful about sources and fact checking

Often stated, rarely proven. "Proper" news organizations aren't exactly paragons of virtue here, as anyone with detailed knowledge of a complicated story will tell you. Sometimes, they'll just publish anything at all - this [wikipedia.org] example by CBS is just one of the most egregious.

WHERE THE FUCK WAS THE "FACT-CHECKING"? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417012)

Do you remember the mainstream media's lead-up to the War in Iraq? WHERE THE FUCK WAS THE FACT-CHECKING THERE? Everyone else in the world could tell that you Americans were being fed one piece of bullshit after another. Hell, even a lot of Americans knew they were getting nuggets of crap. Basically everything that was claimed about Iraq and Saddam turned out to be incorrect. So I'll ask again, WHERE THE FUCK WAS THE FACT-CHECKING THERE?

Re:it is a shame too. (1)

arkenian (1560563) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417030)

See, but I remember being a five news paper town. The two local-local papers: The Mariner and The Journal for my town. Then you had the Ledger, a regional paper for my town and the others in the area, and then the Globe and Herald. Between them there really wasn't anything that's covered on the 'net today with any real degree of reliability that wasn't in the paper.

Re:it is a shame too. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417202)

I disagree. What you will definitely get with citizen journalists (what we get around here) is "interest", which may or may not lead to an expressed bias. If you're not paid, and you're not interested, you're not going to report. And though our town is currently a "two-paper town" (one print+net, one net-only), one of the (paid) editors had an frequently expressed bias, and would do a piss-poor job of checking any facts that supported his point-of-view. He's gone off to greener pastures (wants to report on the presidential campaigns coming). Seriously, his views were nutty and incoherent -- on the one-hand, he would point out how the property tax was hard on many retirees (absolutely true), but on the other hand, he also wrote in favor of repealing the state income tax, claiming that towns could make up the missing local subsidies with (of course) an increased property tax. It's pretty easy for a citizen-journalist to beat that. I could never tell if he was pathologically innumerate, insane, or really just dedicated to destroying government in general. I'm glad he's gone.

Re:it is a shame too. (2)

Nikker (749551) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416930)

The vast majority of blogs or "news sites" don't even make enough to cover their domain registration. If you are one of the few that get enough to consider which way to go then we have progress. Out of the few (which in internet terms is still in the hundreds/thousands) that are passionate enough about producing news content then I think that is amazing and beneficial for us all, provided you take the leap and devote your self to it rather than just moon lighting.

Old news (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416738)

Flat Earth News [amazon.co.uk] published in 2008 goes into this in great detail from a British point of view. Interestingly, it's not the internet that started the rot but massive cost cutting - which for ten years created huge profits - started in the mid-80s. By the mid to late 90s serious journalism and local news were already dieing. The internet merely savaged the corpse.

... and little of value was lost (5, Insightful)

dlcarrol (712729) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416750)

I'm sure there's an objective, non-sensationalist, just-the-facts reporter working somewhere, but to pretend that the internet is the reason these jobs are going away is silly. They're going away because the local reporting is, in the main, just as vacuous as national reporting and probably less well-edited. Factor in that with local reporting we're still getting more government waste, more local corruption, and less effective schools with these programs been cheered on by most of those in journalism, and this seems to boil down to "if that fox stops guarding the henhouse ..."

I agree that the Fourth Estate (right?) is important, but its value is historically overstated, and it is easily co-opted for outright propaganda.

Re:... and little of value was lost (1)

dlcarrol (712729) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416758)

with these programs been cheered on by most of those in journalism

... and please hold the snarky comments about editing; I thought I reviewed it ... :) --> " ... with these programs being cheered on ..."

Re:... and little of value was lost (1, Insightful)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416788)

Three names.

Andrew Breitbart, Matt Drudge, Markos M... well, no, Kos is pretty critical regardless of party uh... Arianna Huffington? Yeah, the site promotes alt-med quackery that those on my side of the isle quite love for some bizarre reason, so that's the ticket.

You get the point. It doesn't matter if you're pro or not, you can still be an empty shill who stumps endlessly for whatever brain dead point of view you want.

The question of quality in media isn't a matter of whether or not they're professional or not. I mean, Shephard Smith works deep in the bowels of Fox News, but, despite any leanings he has, he's fair enough that this liberal's willing to respect him.

Re:... and little of value was lost (1)

houghi (78078) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416932)

For me the same as non-local news. I just stopped watching it altogether. I feel much happier. I don't avoid is, so sometimes I still hear some bad things that happened.

In general I can say "ignorance is bliss." when I hear how people are worried about stuff they have no influence over.

Re:... and little of value was lost (1)

CapOblivious2010 (1731402) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417008)

Yeah, I gave up on news a couple of years ago... if there's anything important going on, I'll hear about it from someone at work or see it in the morning paper (as long as it's above the fold!).

Someone (possibly Bruce Schneier?) pointed out that you don't have to worry about anything on the news, because the very definition of news is "stuff that hardly ever happens".

Example: far more people die in car crashes than plane crashes (about 100x just in the US), but car crashes rarely rise above the level of the morning traffic report, while plane crashes are hashed over for weeks, months, even years.

Perfect (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416752)

One of the amazing things the internet is doing for us: Helping to get rid of the local news, the #1 purveyor of the idea that fear sells.

4Chon.net /NEW/sfront: And not a F*ck was given (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416756)

When the people can be more accurate and more revealing than the Government-regulated commercial speach known as corporations,
we don't need no stinking television.

If I wanted to know the temperature then I would stick my head out the window and tell NOAA.

When I see a sh1t storm a'brewin', I want to look for actual news not the obvious same feed of bullsh1t from a news station.

Yea we know Wiener sexted his genitals, yes we know Lady Gag Gag wrote a song (that has alot of occult symbols IIRC), yeah Bieber is a fagfag.

Television news is old news, we goin to 4Chon /NEW/sfront!

Running "scandal" & "celeb" news kills TV/Pape (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416844)

What about the mint?

What about Bro'bama's hope and Loose Change?

What about the 50-sq mile "technology zone" self-sufficient City being built south of Boise Idaho by a Chinese Corporation owned soley by the Communish China Government?

None of this is on Slashdot, and none of this is on Lamestream news, but it's on 4Chon /new/.

News is government propoganda now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416880)

OBEY!
SPEND MONEY!
MULTIPLY!
SMO-O-O-O-KE!

I thought local stations broadcasted without needing money, and I'm sure because I never payed for it. At-least now that they are going off the air, they don't need to worry about spending money on something that nobody ever payed-for. I've noticed that the government forced everyone to migrated their Analog Televisions into a Digital Television Feed, while the old spectrum is being used by Mexican television stations all over Los Angeles. Same as for Analog Radio.

If local news wasn't so terrible... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416762)

If the local news actually did stories about local politics or events then maybe they'd have more viewers. Instead they cover national news poorly and do fluff pieces about the stupidest things you could possibly imagine.

Falling down on the job (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416768)

So we might miss out on what Britney is doing this week or that a new hairstyle for poodles is all the rage? The fourth estate has let us down badly, they are supposed to be our eyes and ears to help us hold the governments feet to the fire and keep our democracies healthy. Since they are not doing that, why do we need them at all?

Re:Falling down on the job (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416896)

LOCAL news.

L-O-C-A-L.

What your town Council is doing; why the electricity supply failed to Devenmount Estate last week; how many trees fell in the storm.

LOCAL news. Not Britney.

Re:Falling down on the job (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417144)

Maybe your L-O-C-A-L news (thanks for the condescension by the way) doesn't simply cut and paste from news services, my local news does.

Poor newspapers (5, Insightful)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416770)

Gosh, I'd almost feel sorry for newspapers, if they hadn't ruthlessly used their mainstream media status to advance personal and political agendas, both through their choice of stories to report as well as deliberate omissions ("that's not a story"). Bizarrely, journalists still cling to the "we are heroes and white knights" self-narrative, and still in the year 2011 have not had a heel realization.

WikiLeaks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416774)

The reason that this is a problem is because all of the other agencies of the government are trying to destroy any possibility of journalism (investigative or otherwise) that is not "professional (paid) reporters working for newspapers".

If the government wasn't so hell-bent on destroying WikiLeaks, and anything that resembles or is associated with it, then it wouldn't matter as much or even at all, because - just as with open source software - scratching your personal itch is in many ways a better motivator than money. There will be some market for paid investigation, but most of it will be ordinary people investigating things for their own satisfaction as to lack of waste, and such.

Bullshit. Simply bullshit. (5, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416776)

Where I live the local news has rarely ever exposed anything. In fact, they gloss over the details, fail to provide links to documentation for the reader to learn for themselves, and use so many quotes from the elected officials or city staff members that no true analysis can be done.

One professional reporter suggested to me privately that the public, "read between the lines," in order to see what's really being said. While that's great for someone in the know, it doesn't work for 99.9% of the population.

What has helped are local, non-professional sources who take the time to do what reporters used to do. Researching documents, providing them to the public and going back to school to have an even better understanding of how local government is supposed to work.

While I don't want to toot my own horn or even step on the toes of the pros, the work I do actually does expose the issues in local government and shows their general incompetence when compared to how they are supposed to act.

I am going to school for Public Administration, I use my skills as a data analyst to provide crime dashboards to aggregate data, and I post public documents requested and researched for MONTHS so that the public can ignore my own analysis and do their own if they so choose.

The rise of the Internet has done nothing to change the business model of the print papers. They're still pushing out 500 word blurbs of city council meetings instead of 1000+ word analyses. They are the ones at fault here, not the Internet and shame on the FCC for stating anything else.

Re:Bullshit. Simply bullshit. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416918)

One professional reporter suggested to me privately that the public, "read between the lines," in order to see what's really being said.

Even if you are in the know that requires making assumptions. Really, you see a local politician being investigated for anything, what is one to "read between the lines"? That he's into drugs, picking up boys in bathrooms, sending pictures of himself, retaliation for something he did, ....what?

Nope, if something really interests me, I start digging myself - on the internet. And unfortunately, the most I can find is the AP news wires that they took the story from so I don't know much else. If I'm lucky, some international news agency picks up on it (Al-Jazeera, Financial Times/Economist, BBC, NPR, CBC) and I can read about what else is going on and with out any US directed sensationalism.

NPR is the only US based news organization I trust, btw - as much as I can trust any news organization.

I mean really, The Economist was blowing the whistle on the real estate prices and the instability of the mortgage market since 2004/2003 and Fannie/Freddie wrote the editor and said the Economist was fill of shit - well, we saw the truth about that.

US media? Everything hunky dory! Keep buying!!!

Re:Bullshit. Simply bullshit. (1)

wesleyjconnor (1955870) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416940)

So local news is worthwhile, but on the larger scale its useless?

Re:Bullshit. Simply bullshit. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417078)

MONTHS?

Newspapers get published every day, or did you forget that? While it's great you'll get to publish a big article in say, 3 months, what are you going to give your editor in the next 89 days? (assuming you work for a small local daily).

Guess it depends where you live (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417274)

Atlanta's paper while very far to the left has done a good job riding the Atlanta school board's ass over the cheating scandal. At first when our Republican governor pushed even more investigation we had the regular race warlords trot out but they seemed to have taken to the sidelines after the press focused more on the schools than what party the governor was.

Local TV stations do a good job of going after local companies for their misdeeds. Most every city has multiple stations all with their own Consumer Affairs departments. Local governments too have a hard time escaping the ire of the local population because journalist and reporters know where their is strife there usually is news behind it. Like recent assessments claiming homes increasing in value when everyone knows exactly how the market is.

Yes, there are fluff reporters but those stories don't dominate local news. If anything the printed papers did the most damage to themselves with their editorial staff. The AJC was so blatant in their reporting their subs in the surrounding area nose dived because those areas leaned more conservative. It didn't help, or maybe it did, when their lead editorial write took off to Washington DC to be closer to her god; yeah she was that overboard - I was amazed she didn't have official clothing for when writing articles on him.

So if anything the internet fills the need for international news, something that most papers just ran AP stories with anyway. What is also did is open a lot of people's eyes to just how politically slanted many local papers were and how that hid things from prying eyes. In Atlanta it was lack of maintenance on sewers (now billions in work need to be done) to school cheating to the constant use of the airport as family employment agency .

I guess when radio took off people doomed papers too, same when TV stations popped up everywhere.

Media consolidation..? (5, Insightful)

andy1307 (656570) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416780)

FCC approved media consolidation had nothing to do with this?

Re:Media consolidation..? (1)

Trepidity (597) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417010)

I'm not sure if it's the main cause, but it surely doesn't seem to have helped. In the last two medium-sized cities I've lived, the "local" paper was owned by MediaNews Group, and was sort of a superficially localized version of their larger regional papers. As Wikipedia explains, the company's founder was:

a pioneer in "clustering"—developing groups of newspapers that centralized a variety of functions, including production, ad sales, business operations and, in some cases, editorial. An example of this was the Alameda Newspaper Group in suburban San Francisco, where in the mid-1990s, a central newsroom in Pleasanton, California, did all the copy editing, layout and page makeup for five daily papers.

Their M.O. is to rebrand what's effectively one newspaper into a half-dozen or more versions, with a few new articles added to each for local flavor. The added articles are rarely particularly in-depth reporting, and tend to be more along the lines of how the local high-school football team is doing, or a review of a local restaurant. Overall, if you looked at only their local content as a news stream, I would classify it as "mediocre local-interest blog"; it's not hard to imagine someone doing better with even a moderate amount of spare time devoted. These things only look like newspapers because they're padded with 50-70% Reuters/AP reprints, and much of the rest reprints from non-local MediaNews Group stories.

Why (4, Insightful)

markdavis (642305) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416794)

I stopped watching the news many years ago and never did get a paper. It wasn't because of the Internet. It was because I got tired of hearing nothing but trivial, shallow, or sensationalistic crap. I don't care who slept with whom and soundbites don't do anything any good. Plus, since I live in an area with many connected cities, invariably the remaining content usually didn't apply to my locality, anyway.

Quite frankly, the national news isn't much better in many ways. To me, the fact that there was some conflict in the Middle East is simply not news, it is life. Yes, gas prices are high. Republicans did X and Democrats did Y. Some other bill just passed that either raises taxes, takes away state's rights, stomps on the Constitution, or takes away citizens' personal liberty.

I hope that doesn't make me irresponsible. I do try to stay informed. And usually the things that do matter somehow reach me. I am just burned out from negativity, information overload, and feeling completely apathetic about government in general.

Re:Why (1)

Gripp (1969738) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416882)

i'm with ya 100%

plus, why wait for the watered down version that's coming "after this break" (for the 4th break in a row...) when i can just read it on line and be done with it?
why listen to people screech at each other about their opinions on whatever the hot topic is today when i could just come read a forum? not only does a forum not hurt my ears, but it provides links to resources, many more views and i can even add my own! ...

lastly, if companies can't adapt to changes they deserve to fail. i'm more than certain that there are ways for "big news" to make this work in their favor. they just need to stop trying to fight it...

Propaganda (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417066)

Try this site, including this article:

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=25223

As we are Turing complete, we process incoming information which if encoded correctly can change our internal processes.

Pretty scary.

IMO: misleading (2)

Froze (398171) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416828)

Right?! Because it is not news if I choose to subscribe directly to things like the county school board news letter instead of watching/reading commercial laden media hype.

Trying to imply that the Internet is to blame for the downfall of investigative journalism is ridiculous, I have seen more expose's as a result of rapid information spread on the Internet than I ever saw from some local yokel reporters drek on how bob's bakery was vandalized last night.

If anything this means that the FCC should be pushing the protections afforded to journalists toward the more independent sources like bloggers and whistleblowers.

It's Money (1)

glorybe (946151) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416830)

Newspapers,TV and magazines have all been victims of the budget cutting mentality until they no longer function well. Newspapers can no longer support reporters to the degree they used to. Local TV and Radio stations struggle to survive and no longer offer the traditional types of programs. Only programs cheap to produce are on air. Magazines have been crippled by the costs of materials and shipping and no longer can fund large reporting staffs. What we are seeing are businesses following the same path that the right wing advocates in government. Budget cuts are the same thing as quality cuts. Quality cuts drive everything further down the sewer.

Someone should blog about this (1)

Gnaythan1 (214245) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416838)

This could be newsworthy.

Nothng wrong with that... (1)

Stumbles (602007) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416840)

"traditional news" outlets stopped being news a long time ago.

Craigslist killed the local news (1)

George_Ou (849225) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416842)

The local newspapers depended heavily on revenue from classifieds. When that was taken by Craigslist, local newspapers went into the red.

Problem? (1)

Veritas1980 (1008679) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416848)

So long as Fox News is the first to go, I fail to see a problem here.

Re:Problem? (2)

paiute (550198) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417042)

So long as Fox News is the first to go, I fail to see a problem here.

Except that outlets like Fox News - which are essentially company newsletters, not put out to make a profit but to support an ideology - will be the only survivors.

Re:Problem? (1)

Veritas1980 (1008679) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417268)

That is most unfortunate.

4th Estate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416862)

Considering how badly the 4th estate has been doing its job since the advent of the 24 hour news cycle, I find myself not particularly caring.

No point ... (1)

killdashnine (651759) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416892)

There's simply one thing that turns me off from local TV news: That it's dominated by tales of assorted criminal doings, corruption, irrelevant stupid on-goings, or worthless weather forecasting. In one era it was perhaps useful; I don't see "local news" doing anything useful for years to come.

Aggregators. (1)

headkase (533448) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416910)

I get "local news" from aggregator's such as Reddit [reddit.com] . And you know what? Reddit: Politics [reddit.com] makes me truly sad every day. The reason I find aggregators so effective is that of all the local news stories across the nation: they find the ones that stick out enough that people, actual people who could be your neighbor, vote them up.

The source is given for every item, I never click on ones that go to blogs. Someday, perhaps, blogs will be effective just not yet.

Local Miami Herald -- why I stopped... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416924)

I had two choices, and neither was palatable.

I could either read what someone else wanted me to read or what I wanted to read. Both have distinct pitfalls.

The Miami Herald (I still call it that), seemed to have articles about either Cuba or gay rights, and the occasional senior citizen shout out. Now I have no problems with who anyone is. I wouldn't even elevate it to a lifestyle choice because I *DON'T CARE* where you're from or what you do. If you're a good person and I am worthy enough to be your friend, so be it. Frankly, from an intellectual standpoint your place of birth or your orientation (sexual or otherwise) is complete irrelevant. In fact, as a free thinking adult, I sympathize with the gay community precisely because no one has any goddamn say in what I do with myself or how I think. Back to the point -- I am neither Cuban nor gay. It will be a couple decades before I am considered a senior citizen worthy of discounts. After picking up the newspaper one day and seeing article after article about Castro and the gay community, I decided I would stop buying the Herald.

On the other side is the "choose your news". People who want to confirm their beliefs end up listening to news outlets that are in agreement. "I don't watch FOX news!" or "I don't listen to NPR" is equally problematic. If you choose your news you miss out on opposing viewpoints. You get sucked into bias willingly. That's almost worse than being led by the nose because you did it willingly.

So what did I choose? I went with the feeds and subscribe via RSS to viewpoints contrary to my own. Not perfect, and a labor of discipline, but I can go to sleep at night.

Grab your ankles... They're after freedom or money (3, Interesting)

WCMI92 (592436) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416926)

Statements like this by gigantic Federal bureaucracies always leads to some move against freedom.

They will look to either restrict the ability of the internet to report news (which the government would love, the ruling democrat establishment would love nothing more than to shut down Andrew Britebart and Matt Drudge amongst others). Or they will be after confiscatory taxes on the internet, on news sites, on bloggers, to subsidize "local" news.

As others have said in this story, the lack of support for local news couldn't have anything to do with the fact that businesses aren't local anymore like they were 50 years ago... 50 years ago every town had more than one newspaper. Every radio station had a full airstaff AND a news department. Why? Because local advertisers PAID for this.

The FCC realizes that it's reason for existence (over the air radio and TV) is coming to an end because it's being overtaken by internet broadcasting. They also realize that the chink in the 1st Amendment that was created for them in 1934, the fact that radio spectrum has limits, ie, there is scarcity, which paved the way for the Feds to decide who could broadcast and who couldn't, is mooted by the fact that the Internet has NO LIMIT of channels.

So they have to invent some other form of "scarcity" to give them some toehold on the Internet.

Re:Grab your ankles... They're after freedom or mo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417128)

The internet does have limits on channels, Only a few noncompeting bands at 900, 2400, and 5000 MHz over the air, and the (extremely large, but not unlimited) several GHz total on your average copper wire or fiber-optic cable. Compared to the very limited long range bands at AM and FM, this is gigantic, but there are still some fundamental limits. (I in no way want the FCC to regulate the internet, aside from desiring trust-busting on the oligopoly of ISPs)

Re:Grab your ankles... They're after freedom or mo (1)

Dyinobal (1427207) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417214)

I thought something similar as well when I saw they did this report. Most likely it will start with government funding for the poor down trodden news companies and then move onto something more drastic.

Re:Grab your ankles... They're after freedom or mo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417360)

Except, as pointed out above, the summary is entirely wrong and the report's claim is basically the opposite of what the summary and headline say.

Because it used to be so much better (5, Interesting)

Moe Taxes (304424) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416938)

Before the Internet local schools were all awesome, local politicians were honest and dutiful, and the zoning board members could never be bought off, because everyone was cowed into sincerity by the local newspaper.

Or am I delusional.

This not a loss of local control, we haven't had that since the 1860's, it is loss of central control by big media companies who are pulling desperately on the strings they still have.

Better Local News Now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36416956)

Here in Traverse City Michigan, there is the ticker which publishes locally relevant topics on a daily basis. The Record eagle is also online. I don't think local news has been killed off by a longshot. There is just a different paradigm. The need for local news is the same.

I am just glad I can get news which is actual news from the area and not death, mayhem, catastrophe news I was so used to when living in other areas of the country.

Most local news is a joke (1)

Bloodwine77 (913355) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416962)

If you live in small and medium-sized communities, local news is often filled with fluff and oddball stories.

Weather reporting is the big draw for local TV news, and sites like weather.com usually tell you what you want to know when you want to know it. Local TV news put the weather segment at the end of their broadcasts and tease you about it throughout their show ("will it be warm and sunny this weekend? stay tuned to find out!")

In true American fashion... (1)

Bardwick (696376) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416982)

We'll just make local news a "Right" and continue the programming through government funding. I mean really, it can ONLY be a couple billion right? That's nothing. We have *rights* (and therefore taxpayer funding) to cars, cell phones, houses, high speed internet, schooling, blah blah. See, the trick is to spread it out between several funding souces so everyone pays just a tiny bit: Local funds (oh wait, that's me). State funds (hmm, me again). Federal funds (well crap, i'm one of the 50% that actually pay taxes).

I pitched a project to the Knight Foundataion (1)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416988)

A while ago I pitched a web-based regional news system to cover small and medium markets. The idea was to use new DSLR technology and pay one-person investigators to build up coverage of under-served areas. Shoot the stories to large market standards and make the material available to major market stations for free. A lot of big stations have digital news channels and small to medium markets in the shadows of big cities could use those to improve their coverage of local events. I thought it was a good proposal but it didn't even make the first review cut. Apparently not as good as I thought.

It's not surprising the same thing is happening to small town newspapers. They're just so colonial in their approach to technology. Instead of figuring out how to make money online, they try to apply the print media model online then act surprised when it doesn't work. I think the same type of regional journalism model would work for online print. There just needs to be some way to get it off the ground until the ad revenue became self-sustaining.

Got the idea when I tried TV advertising for one my businesses. It was a dismal failure because I was advertising in a major market, a long way from my customer base. Small town advertisers would love a low-cost alternative that focused on their local market, but there just isn't anything.

I'll believe it when I see it... (1)

sajuuk (1371145) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416994)

If by "local news" you mean Local TV News, well, there's none of that around me. On the other hand, if you mean "local newspaper" and "local radio" then you are sadly mistaken, at least up here in the Adirondacks. We get a high quality locally published and printed newspaper 6 days a week - with a superb website accompanying - but NOT replacing it. And the local NPR station isn't half bad either.

your usual local reporters.. (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 3 years ago | (#36416996)

your usual local reporters day used to be filled with taking stuff from news outlets like reuters and formatting them to a news item for the local paper - and writing wishwashshit about local soft issues like how some kids managed to win some local thing. those "reporters" are obviously getting laid off now, who needs a copy-paster on their payroll and who wants to read stuff a day later they read it direct from reuters or some other copy-paste news site? friggin nobody. one thing they did was also affect local politics in a bad way, like by _not_ reporting on things like if local school building is unfit for pupils to sit in due to water damage etc(in a local paper the reporters know the local who's who quite fast and that is natural corruption they can't help, since they're likely to sit at the same dinner tables sometimes with the folk who's shit they should be reporting about). but now anyone can report such stuff and if it's true and sticks then it's doing it's function.

so actually it's leading to more effective schools - or at least the problems are no longer a taboo because the local paper doesn't mention it(implying that it's not true, by not mentioning it..).

OTOH publishing a local newspaper is now cheaper than it ever was before! prints are cheap and editing machinery(computer, doh) is cheap, uploading it to the print is cheap too. (disclaimer, I'm from a 20k+ town that had(still has) a local newspaper, the local articles were about as good as blog postings or worse and the national and international stuff was 1:1 with any other newspaper in the country, it did however have adverts for 'day coffee'(whores) and listings for football etc sports practices for the youngsters. they never ever took a strong stance on the problems in the local schools though - positive stuff was always there though, but what good is that if you're eating potatos that are half green for lunch after being lectured how fantastic the free school lunch system is, just made you feel cheated... had we had cellphone cameras and blogs back then the officials would have been majorly fucked - and that would have improved things.

Local Snewz... (1)

inthealpine (1337881) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417028)

Here in upstate NY I would say our local news on TV is just as uninformative as most news outlets. I will say there is a AM radio station that provides great local news that is relevant and informative. There are so many shady people in the government and the local news on TV doesn't even pretend to care.
There is so much corruption in this area it should be a news reporters dream, but I have never heard anything but fluff BS on local TV news.

Oh, and the AM station that is really good at local content has stated that if the FCC installs something like the fairness doctrine that they will likely close their doors. Way to go FCC you are the problem and the cure....wait a minute??

Buggy Whips (1)

umbrellasd (876984) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417040)

Explanation #1: Car is invented. Buggy whip manufacturers go out of business. Internet is invented. Traditional news goes out of business.

Explanation #2: A free market dictates that the consumer will pay for the level of quality that they want. A trend away from traditional journalism indicates that the consumer is getting sufficient quality from the internet. The consumer is a lot more honest about what the consumer wants than the FCC is.

Explanation #3: Nothing to see here. Move along. Move along.

Posture (1)

salparadyse (723684) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417046)

The media has gone from regarding its job as holding power to account to helping power avoid anything it doesn't want to face up to.
And people have abandoned the media in a steady stream ever since.
Quelle surprise?

Real local news is not reported. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417068)

The local news is many times in bed with the local people in power. For example:
If the local judge is being investigated by the judical ethics committee it will make papers 100 miles away as a front page story but the local news with his friends will not cover the story.

One possible solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417074)

Shield the bloggers who tend to report the actual goings on.

Local news has been dead/useless for years (2)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417076)

Local newspapers rarely have the stones or interest to actually go after local corruption. For example, in the case of Ryan Frederick [google.com] , the local news was basically regurgitating the local police reports until Radley Balko dug into it and found that it was full of corruption. Much of that corruption, I might add, was just barely concealed beneath the surface.

The fact is that the local media outlets have been compromised for a long time. It's not because of "teh corporashunz" it's because they're both too lazy and too afraid of risking local relationships with key officials who might shut them out of future scoops.

Sure it's not just the editing? (1)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417090)

I read several news articles a day online, from major websites (CNN, Reuters, ESPN, etc.) One thing I have noticed is that, invariably, there is a major editing mistake in just about every article. I'm talking about cases where structure or tense will change mid sentence, or a preposition or adverb will be leading to a verb but they add a whole different clause or noun.

End of the World (1)

mgpl777 (1621457) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417100)

"The rise of the numbers of cars has led to a shrinking of horse's usage says a a 475-page report by the FCC, and the consequences could be 'more death accidents, more local air pollution,' 'less effective flow (traffic jams)' and other problems.

The Press has been catering to the LCD soo long (2)

harrytuttle777 (1720146) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417120)

that there is nobody left that can take the news seriously. I can be better informed watching sponge Bob Square Pants for .5 hours that I can watching the local news. The one shining light in the sea of trash journalism is the PBS TV News. Not the Radio, the radio program is just as biased and uninformative as Fox or CNN.

Actually the PBS TV programs are a real breath of fresh air. No fancy graphics. Just professionals talking about the news. It is kind of like the rest of the news outlets used to be 20-30 years ago. I can actually watch the program and not think everyone on the program is retarded.

The Major new outlets say they just cater to what the public is buying. Well, I guess they are not buying it anymore. Even if the argument was valid, it would kind of be like one of those faggety ass drug dealers saying, 'well i am just selling what the public wants'.

-The owner of this post is a fagot

-Nancy Grace.

They killed themselves (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417138)

Local news has been a perp walk, sports and weather for over a generation now.

All local news does is repeat the corporate controlled AP feed, at best.

At least with the Internet you get first hand accounts from where news is happening.

News (1)

DaMattster (977781) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417140)

Instead of news being well written and thought out, we get our news in sounds bites that are coldly calculated by producers to be slanted and biased towards a particular point of view in harmony with its respective corporation. What is in print is of such poor quality it is no wonder there are such concerns expressed. It seems like the internet has condoned "internet speak" and I see it appear in what should be formal communication. I would never use abbreviations such as ppl, lol, or thx in formal communication yet it is happening all of the time. I recently turned down a job offer where the author, in the emailed letter, used LOL! To me, that is not avante guarde, but just plain unprofessional and lack of care or concern. This form of informal communication has taken the basic structure of the English language and reduced it to rubble! I do make mistakes from time to time but I have read blog postings that become giant run-on sentences without proper capitalization or some semblence of punctuation. The writing sounds like one long SMS message being sent between friends. You might argue that text messaging and IM is also responsible for this.

It is NOT the net (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417146)

It was the decision to allow news agencies to merge across the nation. What was once news is now being switched to propaganda. America has become a neo-con's wet dream.

No, It's Not (4, Insightful)

DakotaSmith (937647) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417158)

What's killing all press (from local to world) isn't the Internet -- the Internet is just what's replacing the press.

What's killing the press is that the industry is laced from top to bottom with ignorant Statists capable of neither investigating nor reporting accurately on the events of the day. Almost every news story in existence originates with some Google search by a flunky desperately seeking something for the talking head to say so as to keep butts in the seats and hands off the remotes.

Amazingly, the entire industry is so insular and elitist that is neither capable of seeing its own obvious incompetence nor or recognizing the truth about their entire industry:

That is now nothing more than a batch of scandal sheets and hack-rags, and its former customers are starting to figure that out. Result: they're no longer buying what the press is selling -- because the press is selling total bullshit.

For thirty years, I've made a hobby of de-bunking the press. In the age of the Internet, give me any press story, Google, and fifteen minutes, and I can usually prove that the story never occurred in reality. There's typically a kernel of truth, but it will have been sensationalized and transformed to the point where it bears only a tangential relationship to reality.

Mark this and mark it well: the world beyond your immediate experience isn't what you think it is. Do not assume that anything the press reports is accurate -- in fact, it's a good bed that every report is made up of almost whole cloth.

BS (2)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417186)

Local news was killed in suicide decades ago when they stopped reporting actual facts and switched to 'commentary'.

Internet is just helping clean the mess up.

Content sells (2)

redkingca (610398) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417192)

When "local" news stops being a recap of AP wire stories, and when "commentary" stops being a mix of advertising and thinly veiled slander maybe I'll watch a "local" newscast. Most "local stations" or owned and operated by media conglomerates for the sole purpose of selling advertising space. Actual local news in TV always seems to open with a violent crime, followed by a car chase, followed by pre-weather then a commercial. Then it's part of the weather, sports, cute story, and then the weather recap. There is no "reporting" there is political spin, reporting the news stopped years ago and the public has finally caught on. Now the "local" stations are complaining that the "regional" stations are unfair competition. Well the "local" stations help create the short attention span of the public now they have to live with it.

Yeah, lets force the government to $upport "local news" that will fix the economy and everything.

consequences? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417194)

could be 'more government waste, more local corruption,' 'less effective schools' and other problems.?

Welcome to New York City for the past 100 years.

Problem with newspapers is they are irrelevant. Look at that nonsense with Anthony Weiner. It was even on CNN for god's sake.

Countless times they also on the national "news" dug out the corpse of Michael Jackson, I was waiting for OJ to be talked about next.

The mainstream news, and the local news are a joke.

Fires, murders, crashes (1)

RogueWarrior65 (678876) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417208)

That pretty much sums up local TV news. If it bleeds, it leads. That being said, local news isn't really local once you live 25-50 miles from the broadcaster. I grew up less than 25 miles from Manhattan and it seemed like anything that was on the local news might as well have been happening in a foreign country. These days, Internet media and local talk radio will have local stories plus, with the Internet, you can search for a story rather than being forced to accept what the anchor is saying, when they are saying it. You don't have to sit through 25 minutes of a 30 minute broadcast to get the story they promoted at the start of the show.

As for mainstream media bias, it's clearly there and can be proven with basic statistics. John Lott's book "Bias" is a great, exhaustively researched treatise on the subject. Accountability? What a joke! A newspaper can publish a false story on page one above the fold for a week before somebody calls them on it and they publish a correction on page 14 two weeks later in smaller type at which point most people have already accepted the falsehood as truth. IMHO, the mainstream media's loss of control over the people is what they're really whining about.

Local news is killing local news (1)

Craig Maloney (1104) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417216)

Seriously, outside of just being paid advertisements and shills for the syndicated programming, there's not a lot of reporting going on for local news. The product is just terrible to watch, at least in our area.

I'm sure at some point they're going to say that the Internet is killing CNN. On that, I can fully agree: Reading comments from Twitter, voting on stories via Twitter, and showing cat videos from Youtube will definitely kill CNN dead.

Dinosaurs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417218)

The local & national news are through. They are boring formatted former shadows of what news programs should be & a good number of people feel they cannot get the truth from TV news. I am 60 & of course this is my opinion & many peoplel in my age group still watch TV news. I personally cannot stand the fluff, fake smiles & boring presentation.

Discussed this with the young people in my office & their responses varied: do not believe them, not getting the whole story or I get my news from the internet.

When I asked them about the opinion type shows (O'Relly, Maddow) they say they twist the news to their view. Some say they watch Jon Stewart.

WRONG. (1)

Seumas (6865) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417300)

Networks using the remaining 20 minutes of their broadcast that isn't commercials to add in more commercials by way of promoting shows on their own networks ("Tonight, ABC local news interviews the cast from Lost!", filling it with 10 minutes of sports, then 5 minutes of "IS THE INTERNET KILLING LOCAL NEWS? COULD IT KILL YOUR FAMILY, NEXT?! FIND OUT WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TO SAVE YOUR FAMILY FROM THIS DEADLY PREDATOR, TONIGHT AT 11!", and then 5 minutes of some ridiciulous local human interest story and some weather. All while there are 24x7 news channels people could watch or - better - plenty of news online from better sources and with the ability to filter out the bullshit cruft as you like, online.

Local news is a fucking joke, because local news is a fucking joke. The reason that they're only expiring in the last fifteen years is that there are finally alternatives. It was still shit when it dominated - it's just that it was the only option we had before the late 90s.

Is a need (1)

sunfly (1248694) | more than 3 years ago | (#36417318)

Wherever there are people there is a need for local news. People need / want to know what is going in in the community, with local schools, and local businesses.

All the newspapers in our area (fly over country) have paywalls for online content. They can do it as there is not local news bloggers in most small towns. They have shrunk, but still surviving just fine.

My town has zero bloggers (for local news anyway) and zero newspapers. I once built a site and tried to get a handful of local peeps to add content regularly, but working for free nobody kept it up, and I did not want to mess with selling ads and having employees for a hobby.

This is news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417336)

I stopped buying the newspaper fifteen years ago because of the shallow reporting skills, the ink getting on my hands, the waste of paper and having to recycle it, and the fact that I could get most of the news I was interested in online and at work. Yes of course most of the "news" websites today are also shallow reporting slanted towards entertainment, but there are still several sites that do actual reporting without a raging hard-on for biased stories designed to smear their political opponents. However, I don't lament the lack of good reporting because frankly it was never that good to begin with. Local politics has always been corrupt and local schools have rarely been effective. I don't expect this to get better or worse with journalistic accountability.

and.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417366)

This article was sponsored by NewsCorp.

The FCC is looking for a purpose (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36417368)

Local news tv is only of interest to old fuddy duddies. I don't even have a television. And the FCC should be cut up into little bits or scrapped before they find another crusade to go after. Their number one misson since day one was to undermine free speech.

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