Sunday, May 10, 2009

Newspapers: How much death is self inflicted?

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After reading an article in The Nation that states George W. Bush was "arguably our worse president ever." I move over to the NYT and see something by Frank Rich (disclosure - I love the way the man writes) - titled "The American Press on Suicide Watch," - that describes how one major aspect of the current newspaper death spin is how journalists acted like patsy's while W. was bringing us down.

Yet, I can't help but think about all those dumb articles that mimicked Karl Rove without blinking -- remembering how I went "oh well - another one of those" and skipped on to the next article or the next newspaper....  Our beloved Houston paper was not the only one to do this.  The NYT so stupidly bowed to the unethical Judith Miller when she said WMDs really did exist in Iraq.  Just think of all the millions (Americans and Iraqis) who have died as a result of this chicanery.

For those newspapers that are left.  Try being more ethical, don't get so swayed by the big boy corporations, or the way out wacko Minute Men types - and more people will support you.

It is however, only fair to say that newspapers were also done in by the proliferation of blogs (like dreamacttexas) - who clip articles and in essence "take business away"  - and the global economic disaster of 2008-2009. 

As for helping out newspapers in an hour of need, dreamacttexas will make a concerted effort to provide only links to newspapers, and not copy articles.

We are worried however.  If newspapers start charging for reading - we are in trouble.  As it stands, we subscribe to the NYT, the Houston Chronicle, The Nation, The New Yorker, and the Texas Observer.  We have access to many others through the university library.  But if we can get sued for publishing a paragraph from an AP article, we won't have the money for legal representation (NO PLEASE!  this doesn't mean to send us money).  

A NYT article today said that we were in a crisis like the time when the world encountered the Gutenberg Press, the distribution of information is in a global transformation.  Maybe so...  it will be very interesting to see what happens next.  Lets hope dreamacttexas can stay alive and non-monetary, when most of the blogs get totally sucked in by capitalism.

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