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Friday, January 16, 2009 : A Call to Save Newspapers

Newspapers are on the brink of extinction-warns Chris Freiberg , creator of and  Facebook group National Buy A Newspaper Day.

 The site urges every visitor to buy a copy of their local paper on Feb. 2, Groundhog Day. (How ironic is it that newspaper advocates are utilizing online media and social networks to rally their support?)

Currently, the Facebook group has 3,588 members , 500 who may participate,1,453 who declined the invitation, and 8,248 who have yet to respond.  Freiberg's call to action reads:

The newspaper is heavily focused on local news. It keeps you informed
about events in your town and keeps local government in-line. So for one day, Monday, Feb. 2, 2009, please make it a point to pick up your local newspaper (reading it online doesn't count).

facebook buy a newspaperPrint media's demise should come as no surprise to anyone who has followed the industry for the past decade.

Even the New York Times, one of the nation's most prominent papers, faces a fiscal crisis, with $400 million in debt, and many other papers around the nation are deep in the red

You may recall my post about newspapers seeking government support. Legislator Frank Nicastro  petitioned the Connecitcut state government to save the Bristol Press.

 For the past few years, many publishers and editors decided to decrease regional and national coverage to provide a deeper focus on on local stories

Unfortunately, the shift was too little, too late. Since 2002, TV and Radio have enjoyed double the amount of online ad growth compared to newspapers. I worked at a community newspaper for several years, so I sympathize with my former colleagues who are the in the "old media" and hoping for a viable solution.

I wonder if Punxsutawney Phil could offer his forecast for newspapers in addition to his winter prediction.He might call for a long, brutal winter.

By Matt O'Hern at 11:50 AM | Comments (0)

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