Pandemic hurting newspapers financially

Local news allows us to remain informed about our government, school boards and elections. Like the story last year about former Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh, who was indicted on fraud over sales of her “Healthy Holly” children’s books.

Only the dedicated efforts of journalists at The Baltimore Sun brought it to the attention of local readers and continued to inform Marylanders over the months of the subsequent trial. Without local reporting, stories like these might not be told.

And yet the local news industry is in dire straits due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Advertising revenue has dried up as businesses are shuttered to combat the virus, leading to layoffs, furloughs and pay cuts for thousands of journalists. Journalists are essential workers, and Marylanders depend on local news to know what’s happening in their communities, including getting lifesaving public health information about the impact of COVID-19 in their areas. Many outlets are even making their online COVID-19 coverage free for all readers as a public service, despite the financial strains they face.

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