The Race By Robert Kuttner

The Race By Robert Kuttner
By the usual indicators, daily newspapers are in a deepening downward spiral. … A far more hopeful picture is emerging for newspapers. In this scenario the mainstream press, though late to the party, figures out how to make serious money from the Internet, uses the Web to enrich traditional journalistic forms, and retains its professionalism — along with a readership that is part print, part Web. Newspapers stay alive as hybrids. The culture and civic mission of daily print journalism endure. Can that happen? Given the financial squeeze and the shortsightedness of many publishers and investors, will dailies be able to navigate such a transition without sacrificing standards of journalism? Or will cost-cutting owners so thoroughly gut the nation’s newsrooms that they collapse the distinction between the rest of the Internet and everything that makes newspapers uniquely valuable? Which newspapers are most likely to survive? And, while we are at it, why does the survival of newspapers matter? In an era when the Web explodes the monopoly of the print newspaper as authoritative assembler of the day’s news and invites readers to be both aggregators and originators of content, what remains distinctive about newspapers?
http://cjr.org/issues/2007/2/Kuttner.asp

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