A few years ago, you would have unfolded your newspaper and read opinion and analysis like this. Those days are gone. Today, most of us get our news and commentary online, perhaps supplemented by network or cable television, although TV viewership is far smaller than in the days of “The Big Three.” Buried alongside those iconic broadcasters is the public’s confidence in news from all sources. Only 16% of Americans say they have a “great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in newspapers, only 11% in TV news. Those numbers keep sinking. Today, if Walter Cronkite ended his broadcast, “And that’s the way it is,” most people would just smirk.Read More
Commentary: Big Tech Has Been Destroying Local News
It’s no secret that local newspapers have been dying. Since 2004, the United States has lost a quarter of its newspapers — 70 dailies and over 2,000 weeklies. This has been devastating for communities across the country who depend on these newspapers to stay informed and engaged. There are many factors causing this decline, but one of the main culprits, especially as of late, has been Big Tech.
There’s a term to describe the actions of massive corporations manipulating the levers of state power to dominate their markets and pad their bottom lines at the expense of others. It’s crony capitalism. Under this system, crony capitalists flood Washington, DC with campaign contributions, pay-to-play experts, and legions of lobbyists to shape the laws and regulations that govern their industries.
Sound familiar? If you have observed Big Tech’s movements within the halls of power in our nation’s capital over the past decade, you know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s said that if you whisper “Section 230” to yourself three times while walking through the Capitol, a Big Tech-funded lobbyist will suddenly appear to explain why changing even one word in the arcane law might trigger the apocalypse.Read More