Death of the Daily News

Daily News

The Daily News was one of the nation’s best-selling newspapers in its heyday, a sensational tabloid that found no shortage of topics to write about. The paper’s coverage ranged from intense city news and politics to celebrity gossip, sports and classified ads. Its pages were adorned with beautiful photographs, and the newspaper was an early adopter of the Associated Press wirephoto service. The Daily News was also known for its editorials, and many of them reflected the political and social upheavals of the 1920s, including political wrongdoing such as the Teapot Dome scandal and social intrigue such as the romance between Wallis Simpson and King Edward VIII.

The last decade saw the onset of digital technology that has transformed local journalism and caused a number of newspaper closures. The most recent development has been the rise of video news. Unlike traditional print newspapers, which are consumed primarily in the home or at work, videos can be distributed online and are more easily watched on mobile devices. Video can also be more visually compelling and may attract viewers who would not otherwise seek out local news.

But this shift to video news does not mean that the end of local newspapers is near. In fact, many communities still lack access to reliable local news sources. And in those places where local newspapers are disappearing, citizens are finding ways to fill the void and become their own gatekeepers of information.

The story of what happens when a community loses its local newspaper is an important and timely one. In Death of the Daily News, Andrew Conte examines this question in a town in southwestern Pennsylvania that lost its daily paper in 2015. His anatomy of this experiment reveals the challenges and the hope. It is a powerful argument that the future of local news depends on people truly understanding its value and taking responsibility for delivering it.