Here’s something to ponder: Two new investigations into the future of news that couldn’t be more different.
1. Moving Into Multiple Business Models: Outlook for Newspaper Publishing in the Digital Age. This report authored by PriceWaterhouseCoopers asserts that newspapers must keep on reducing costs, increase outsourcing of “generic editorial” functions, further centralize newsrooms and ad salesforces and continue consolidating ownership while putting more emphasis on multi-platform publishing and marketing to niche audiences.
2. Saving the News: Toward a National Journalism Strategy. This report published by the media reform organization Freepress urges the U.S. government to recognize that preserving public-interest journalism is a pressing public policy issue that requires its intervention. It wants the government to introduce incentives that would encourage debt-laden media companies to divest themselves of news business assets while fostering the creation of non-profit, low-profit, community-owned and employee-owned news organizations. It also calls on the U.S. government to create a strong publicly funded news system similar to the Britain’s BBC or Canada’s CBC.