News

The powers of the “Fourth Estate” and the ability of a free press to advocate and frame not only political issues but social, economic, and environmental, to name a few, issues is essential for transparency and accountability.
Sullivan writes that while the disinformation spread by Donald Trump and his supporters, and their subsequent cries of “fake news” at anything unfavorable about the president or his administration covered by mainstream news organizations, is well documented, something just as important – and equally depressing – in journalism is happening.
While national news consistently tells the story of infection rates, the death toll, and COVID-driven unemployment numbers via sidebar graphics; local news is sharing essential information about the implications of local infection rates and places to be tested; financial support for families in need; as well as humanizing members of the community who succumb to the virus — information residents want and need.
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.
As the NewsGuild continues to encourage bipartisan Congressional support for S.B. 3718, NewsGuild President Jon Schleuss penned a letter to Senate Leaders Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Chuck Schumer (D-NY) to further underscore the need for local news in our communities.
As essential workers, journalists are a critical resource for providing the people of New Hampshire with local reporting on what’s happening in their communities. This includes life-saving public health information about the impact of COVID-19 in their areas, particularly as the pandemic’s course takes new directions every day.
Many readers in Washington state might not realize just how bad things are out there for communities that, in recent decades, have lost their local weekly or daily newspapers or seen their newspapers reduced to what are being referred to as “ghost newspapers,” as Sullivan refers in her book title. Newspapers in Spokane, Vancouver, Seattle, Yakima and Walla Walla have in-state owners, though struggling with market changes, are faring better.
Meanwhile, the local news industry is enduring dire circumstances due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Advertising revenue has diminished as businesses are making an effort to combat the virus, leading to layoffs, furloughs, and pay cuts for thousands of journalists. Journalists, like many others, are essential workers, and New Jerseyeans depend on local publications to receive targeted information pertaining to their communities.