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Media in Focus

News Dissemination

Today there are more newspapers, television channels, cable TV operators, radio stations, magazines, news sites, and general Web sites, reporting news than at any time in the history of the world.

Each government arm, major (and minor) company, industry body, sports organization, club, charity, institution, political party, politician, and personality is issuing press releases.

Never has there been more news on offer.

Despite the proliferation of news, the infrastructure associated with originating news, the gathering, editing, sub-editing, and dissemination of news content, is declining, quite sharply.

At one time every major news publication or organization had a news bureau in each major city of the world. Or at the very least it had an arrangement to share journalist resources in major cities.

Today that is changing, and changing rapidly. With increased focus on corporate profits, adding value to balance sheets, and shareholder returns, cost-cutting has seen major retrenchments of editors, journalists, research units, and support staff. How often do you see this newspaper or that newspaper laying off scores of journalists? How often now do you pick up a newspaper and see story after story attributed to The Associated Press, Reuters, or other less-well-known news wires? Switch to television stations or cable TV and witness the same phenomena. Almost all the news on Fox News is via The Associated Press.

Look at the proprietors of news media. See how the numbers are dwindling as a small number of operators grow larger and larger, swamping the independents. There is now without much doubt a major monopoly of the world's media.

Fortunately the Internet has bred an entire new resource. Self-reporting, comment and analysis has mushroomed through Web sites and blogs. Major stories are being broken, propelled, or scrutinized by everyday people through the Internet.

News.Net News Desk

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