The Free Press Summit Participants Speak

They asked us to discuss the future of media, and boy did we respond. Some of these responses were collected by participants and some were voted on. I don’t know why they had us vote on some and not on others but there you are. The participants in this summit, we should add, are journalists, policy experts, students, and telecom representatives. Most of the telecom people bailed before the voting process started–guess they got bored.

Why should we save journalism?
1. It’s essential to a vibrant, participatory democracy
2. It connects people to their communities
3. It maintains the watchdog
4. We don’t need to save it – blogs will fill the void*
5. Telling untold stories and highlighting diversity

How can government and the private sector support independent newsgathering in the 21st century?
1. More government funding – 47%
2. Fund training for journalists and research for new business models – 16%
3. Private sector transparency on sources and conflicts of interest – 11%
4. Prevent more media consolidation 19%
5. Better protection and credentialing for independent journalists – 5%
6. Keep the government out – 5%

What concerns you most about the state of journalism today?
Loss of watchdog journalism – 42%
erosion of trust between public and media – 18%
increasing information divide – 12%
job losses at newspapers, radio, and TV – 5%
loss of local reporting 7%
lack of diversity 16%

*This only serves to underscore that the mostly male, mostly older audience does not understand that BLOGGING is a TOOL, not a mode of thought. Journalism and blogging are not mutually exclusive; they complement each other.