Today, reports indicate that even as more people turn to local journalism for information on the growing coronavirus threat in their communities, local media operations are being shuttered across the nation. Public Knowledge contends that unless Congress steps in immediately to help fund local journalism, communities across the country risk losing one of their key sources of accurate information about what citizens need to know and do in response to the pandemic.
The following can be attributed to Lisa Macpherson, Senior Policy Fellow at Public Knowledge:
“Right now the world is grappling with two pandemics — the coronavirus now circling the globe, as well as an ‘infodemic,’ which makes it difficult for people to find trustworthy sources of news and reliable guidance on how to respond to a public health threat at the exact moment consumers need this information most.
“As local events have been cancelled to encourage social distancing, and all non-essential services and businesses have been closed in several states, yet another source of critical funding for local journalism — local advertising — has dried up. We urge Congress to include funding for local media in the next stimulus bill to help America rise to the challenge of this pandemic, and not jeopardize our local pipeline to accurate news and information.”
Members of the media may contact Communications Director Shiva Stella with inquiries, interview requests, or to join the Public Knowledge press list at firstname.lastname@example.org or 405-249-9435.