No Newspaper? One-Third Won’t Care

Mar 12, 2009 by

And isn’t that just some cheery news to offset all the negatives – newspapers shutting down, massive layoffs, bankruptcy, and so on and so one.

Yet, according to this article by The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press (ain’t that a mouthful), “fewer than half of Americans (43%) say that losing their local newspaper would hurt civic life in their community “a lot.” Even fewer (33%) say they would personally miss reading the local newspaper a lot if it were no longer available.”

Hat tip to my former colleague Steve Yelvington for pushing out a “tweet” on this. If you’re in old media, new media or middle media, you should be reading his blog.

If you’re not, get started. Steve and I don’t always agree (paid content for one), but if he came out and said the world was flat, well, I’d at least go take a look.

There was one other section I just had to comment on: When it comes to local news, more people say they get that news from local television stations than any other source. About two-thirds (68%) say they regularly get local news from television reports or television station websites, 48% say they regularly get news from local newspapers in print or online, 34% say they get local news regularly from radio and 31% say they get their local news, more generally, from the internet.

People don’t realize it, but they really would miss their local newspaper, and I’m not saying that simply because that’s what I did for a quarter century.

The term is “rip and read” and that’s what a lot of local television and radio stations do. Nothing against them, but they simply don’t have the resources newspapers do – even now with all the cutbacks.

A big percentage of what you see on TV or hear on the radio is coming right from the newspaper.

If there’s no newspaper, there is going to big a huge void. Think on this, remove the newspaper, and tell me how much local “news” you are really going to get from TV, radio and the internet.

A lot less than the you think.

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