Is journalism dying?

Published: Thursday, March 28 2013 4:10 p.m. MDT

Is traditional journalism dying?

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The future of journalism is yet to be determined. Last week, for example, the Pew Research Center issued a report suggesting that journalism was dying. The loss of ad dollars has forced many newspapers to make cutbacks.

But Matthew Yglesias in an article for Slate claims that “The news-reading public has never had more and better information at their fingertips,” and therefore, the American news media has never been in better shape. Although there may be more information available, is it Journalism?

In another article, Megan McArdle drills down on the real reasons consumers may be saying journalism is dying and aren’t buying more papers. “If you look at the Pew survey, people superficially seem to be complaining about the declining breadth of the stories they read. But if you look at other research, it's likely that what they're actually complaining about is the political slant.”

McArdle clarifies, “Think about coverage of gay marriage. It's celebrated throughout the New York Times: the style section, the Vows section, the real estate section. These stories do not contact an opposing side for comment on whether the couple should be allowed to get married; the worldviews is that of course gay marriage is awesome. If you oppose gay marriage, you'll see a lot of "incomplete" stories about gay marriage that don't address possible social costs — just as environmentalists reading a story about a factory opening might get annoyed if the story doesn't discuss environmental criticism of the new site.”

According to Gabriel Rossman, this leaves journalist one direction: “… the way for media outlets to survive and thrive is to engage in what traditionally trained journalists would regard as lower quality, by forsaking the objectivity genre and pandering to their readership’s beliefs.” So is the old model of objective journalism dying?

Email: mhartvigsen@desnews.com

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