Local news is under assault, and the pandemic has only made the situation more dire. Nearly one in five newspapers has closed over the past decade. Tens of thousands of journalists have lost their jobs, including many in the past year. Tech platforms take in billions from digital ads, while newspapers struggle to find a sustainable business model. Hedge fund and private equity owners have extracted profits by slashing costs. The result is a rapidly shrinking industry with less coverage of vitally important beats that hold local governments, elected officials, and businesses accountable. Against this backdrop, the very basis of our democracy—an informed, engaged citizenry—seems to be under threat. Hear from news leaders on the frontlines of the fight to save local news.
Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.