“We get our news from the Council”

The journalist Andrew Gilligan, making a little-noticed appearance before a House of Lords committee this week, pointed out how the near-extinction of local journalism is destroying the industry’s ecosystem.

News used to emerge because, from the Penrith Advertiser to the John O’Groat Journal, local hacks would get around, find out things and, on a good day, augment their always feeble pay packet by selling stuff to the nationals. Now journalists mostly stare at screens, and such news as does emerge comes, often unregurgitated, through official channels or public relations operatives.

Matthew Engel

“Malevolent but not mendacious: why we will miss the Screws”

Financial Times Nov 26 2011

“News is something that someone somewhere wants to suppress. Everything else is advertising.”

Lord Northcliffe

see also “Flat Earth News” by Nick Davies

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