Last week, we asked you to send your thoughts and ideas about the future of the news to the Federal Trade Commission as part of its inquiry into the state of journalism. The response was overwhelming: More than 2,000 citizens submitted comments to the agency through SavetheNews.org.
In December, the FTC will hold workshops on journalism and the news in our digital economy, and will consider what role policymakers should play in supporting journalism.
The public outpouring clearly shows that people are concerned about these issues, and that they favor a central role for the government in supporting healthy and vibrant journalism. What that role should be, however, was hotly debated.
Net Neutrality opponents would have us believe that an open Internet is bad for business. Funny then, that folks from the business and tech sectors have been penning editorials in recent weeks to make the case that Net Neutrality is actually pro-business and pro-job growth.
Late last week, the Federal Communications Commission announced it was seeking public input on draft rules that would codify and supplement existing Internet openness principles. This was another chapter in the ongoing "Net neutrality" debate.
What does the FTC have to do with journalism? FTC Chairman John Liebowitz has said, "We do two things at the FTC: competition and consumer protection. Both of those issues touch on the future of journalism.”
There is a new voice in Texas news: The Texas Tribune went live at midnight last night. But the Texas Tribune is not just a new source for news and information; it is a new model for multi-platform nonprofit news. In fact, CEO and Editor Evan Smith sees the Tribune as a new kind of “public media.” He wants the Texas Tribune to build community, to be a central hub for ideas and innovation in Texas, and to inspire citizens to engage in the world around them. It’s a big, bold project that has built upon the successes and failures of numerous other nonprofit journalism ventures.
I sat down with Evan Smith last week to talk about how the Texas Tribune is different from any other news site out there, and about the role journalists should play in fighting for the future of news.