Original Article By: Charles Bethea March 26, 2019
Local News is mainstream news and the voice of the people should be returned to a national spotlight. As local news’ presence continues to diminish with the shrinking of newspapers and journalists so to does the voice of the people. News stories which cover the happenings of local affairs, say the building of a near-by oil pipeline, do not get the covered by much more than national media, if it is covered at all. The trouble is, national media sources do not generally include the perspective of the locals affected by the situation, more so the view of companies involved. When these stories don’t, or can’t, get picked up, the public loses its ability to remain informed.
An informed public is essential for democracy. Without being informed, the public is less effectively able to participate in our government and more likely to follow whatever the national spotlight is reflecting. A local news industry that is continuously shrinking limits what people know about the world around them, even if it is only 5 miles away. Over a thousand communities no longer have a local news source, and the ones that are still available are losing staff. The loss of money has led to budget cuts, and now, the state of our planet is involved in the mess. Stories on the environment and what is happening to land in the area normally covered by local journalists are now often left uncovered, or only marginally reviewed. People are losing their ability to know what is happening to the areas affecting their water, the food they eat, even the air they breathe. It is the power and place of local journalism that provided agency for that information in order to launch it to a national platform. Newsprime will make local news profitable again and place it back into a national spotlight.