Why we’ll lose the Dayton Daily News, and what we’ll really be missing

Everyone who reads the Dayton Daily News, either in print or online, knows they’ve been making changes faster than a casino changes dealers when a table gets hot. No matter what they seem to do, the general consensus is it’s getting worse. Typically, things get worse before they get better- but, the problem with the local news is that they have been dragging us down with them.

The industry is hosed. Has been for a while. What we’re watching is the last hurrah of the buggy whip makers only they are now called the mass media.

I just read the most important article on the subject- well written, researched and reasoned. I highly suggest everyone clicks through to read the whole thing- especially my readers employed by the Cox sisters.

Society doesn’t need newspapers. What we need is journalism. For a century, the imperatives to strengthen journalism and to strengthen newspapers have been so tightly wound as to be indistinguishable. That’s been a fine accident to have, but when that accident stops, as it is stopping before our eyes, we’re going to need lots of other ways to strengthen journalism instead.

When we shift our attention from ’save newspapers’ to ’save society’, the imperative changes from ‘preserve the current institutions’ to ‘do whatever works.’ And what works today isn’t the same as what used to work.

via Newspapers and Thinking the Unthinkable « Clay Shirky.

Citizen journalism is still in it’s nascent stages. Twitter and YouTube may provide the next platform for journalism, it’s too early to tell. Either way, this site, and your participation – is closer to the future of journalism than what lands on your doorstep or on your screen every day.

There are answers for the Dayton Daily News, unfortunately, the powers that be can’t put down the buggy whip and come off their high horses fast enough. It’s really quite sad. Newspapers were the fourth estate in our country- now, they’re not even a cheap time-share, with a lot of visitors from far away (syndicated news). It’s time to start working on building our own information delivery platform- by expecting the people we elect and employ with our tax dollars to report back to us in an open, honest, transparent way- at least until we sort out how to put the fourth estates home back in order.

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