by Christopher Connell
It is, unfortunately, old news.
Virginia’s newspapers, the single biggest source of local news, face unprecedented challenges, with their readers, revenues, and staffs steadily dwindling.
It’s a paradox because news writ large now seems to be available everywhere, all the time, on phones in our pockets and purses.
People still hear about bickering in Congress, mysterious Chinese balloons overhead, and blizzards burying Buffalo. What they learn less about is what’s going on in their own backyards, towns, schools, counties, and state capitals.
Some 2,500 U.S. newspapers have closed since 2005, some over-reliant on advertising-dependent business models that cratered with the rise of the Internet, many simply killed by their market areas’ struggling economies. Most were print weeklies, where most people got their local news. Continue reading