What failing traditional media have lost in revenue and influence, they have certainly gained in accounts of their own decline. Such a piece last year by Guardian editor Katharine Viner was widely shared by media workers, those perplexed that no one seems to be listening to them any longer, or paying them much mind. It’s not an altogether rotten work, and it makes the important case, as others have, that diminished revenues diminish the capacity of news outlets.
This is true. Most media, whether publicly listed or privately persisting, have seen a drastic decline in profit and reputation. What is not, in my view, true -- and “truth”, as you know, is something many major outlets claim to tap directly -- is the claim that often appends pieces such as Viner’s. Namely, “We are needed now more than ever. Please donate.”