Don’t wanna pay reporters? Don’t pay professors instead

New York University professor Jonathan Zimmerman proposes an interesting solution for resource-challenged newspapers: get university professors to write for free. Zimmerman points out that a century ago, members of the academy routinely wrote for the popular press, and that if universities rewarded profs for publication in popular press, perhaps more would do so.

I’ve had some great profs. I know some great profs. And to his credit, Zimmerman does acknowledge that academics will  need some instruction in writing for the general public. So surely he won’t mind if I suggest that all of those out-of-work journalists  start applying for work at universities? Though I doubt many of them can afford to work for free.