The first was written John-Henry Doucette, who remains in Norfolk although not in the newspaper business. He argues that it is not newspapers that people need; instead, it is the newsgathering capability:
… I think we need to stop talking about saving specific businesses and start talking about defending our capability to gather news that is in the public interest.
Doucette continues to advocate for some type of public financing of these newsgathering activities.
The second was written by Olivia Hubert-Allen, who left The Pilot earlier this year and now works for The Baltimore Sun. That paper has recently adopted a paywall, which seems to be the trend these days and is definitely something I wish The Pilot would consider. She raises several significant points about the value of newspapers, including this one:
Big media still plays an important part in the local news ecosystem.
Even if you’ve never opened an edition of The Baltimore Sun or visited the website, you have still been impacted by its journalism. … The Sun functions as an extension of many of those smaller newsrooms. Stories originally uncovered by Sun reporters end up on nightly newscasts and rehashed on the local blogosphere.
Two different conclusions to the conundrum of what to do about newspapers. My own thoughts are published in today’s Pilot, which I will post about tomorrow.Follow @vpaige