The media landscape in this country took another vicious bodyblow this week when Postmedia and TorStar announced further bungled efforts to monopolize the print industry.
In a swap that will see no money change hands, the two conglomerates simply swapped publications in various communities that the other already serves.
In Postmedia’s case, it will be closing some 20 community papers, a wealth of them throughout Ottawa where the company clings to the Citizen and Sun or the Citi-Sun as many call it these days since they are largely one in the same.
Gone will be weeklies in Kanata, Stittsville and Orleans, all of which covered the consistent growing pains on the city’s suburbs, and did so admirably.
Also affected are smaller dailies in centers such as Orillia and Cobourg.
It is the further hollowing out of a once-mighty industry as it struggles to keep up with the demands of today’s digital age.
Ad revenue in a lot of these places has been drying up for some time as business owners flock to other avenues to market.
It’s the Internet that remains a double-edged sword as it has become such a common tool in daily life.
Yet, it can be seen as a direct cause for the shortfall of advertising revenue.
When the worldwide web first came about, there was a massive rush to be part of it. This was the tool that would move the world forward.
And it has, in a great many ways. But those publications that instead gave their news away free of charge online noticed a sudden freefall of revenue. Suddenly no one felt the need to buy a newspaper anymore when the same story could be found online.
The scenario has only turned further away from the print landscape as companies such as Facebook and Google buy up large chunks of company advertising money.
Newspapers and even online media sources have been left to rot.
But, it is these publications that should be supported, and supported wholeheartedly. For in some cases communities have been left with little to no news coverage with the losses.
They served to keep municipal politicians on notice that someone is watching, and ensured that small town athletes get their due.
Yes, the world is changing, and the media landscape is changing too.
But, there will always be a place for news, not purported media types that regurgitate press release material.
To have the news, you must support the news.