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As newspapers across the country continue their slide into mediocrity, each one wondering when the industry will at long last bottom out, the debate on the future of journalism rages on. Here in Springfield, MA, the death watch for the city’s only daily newspaper, the Republican, continues unabated as many people here are now taking bets on the number of years the newspaper has left in it – and none of those bets are beyond ten years.
Daily newspapers are quickly becoming irrelevant as their online counterparts are able to put up the news quicker than them and slicker than them. Indeed, many people who pick up the daily newspaper have already read the front page news online – oftentimes as far back as the evening before. So what’s the point? Instead of cutting back on local reporting staff, the dailies should be axing the national, AP-fed, headlines.
The latest episode of John Dvorak’s “Cranky Geeks” video show [click here to watch it - 30mins.] talks about journalism, blogging, and the financial dilemma many news outlets currently face. As Dvorak – himself a writer for PC Magazine – points out, the answer many struggling newspapers have turned to – firing staff and reducing content – is not going to save them.
If anything, it will probably only accelerate the death dive.