Posts by Harold Feld and Jane Lee

Part V: We Need to Fix the News Media, Not Just Social Media—Part 3

This blog post is a sequel to Fix Media Not, Just Just Social Media Part -- 2, and part of our continuing series on platform regulation. Part 1 rejected the argument that the current crisis in journalism (both the crisis of the business of news and the crisis of trust in journalism) is strictly the fault of digital platforms. To the contrary, a series of bad business decisions starting in the 1990s contributed hugely to the financial collapse of traditional print media and the general “dumbing down” and partisan fragmentation in the news. Part 2 placed the current crisis of journalism in historical context, observing that for over a century the evolution of new communications technologies has time and again dramatically reshaped both the reporting side and the business side of journalism. Social media is no exception to this cycle, and coverage of Ferguson in 2014 provides valuable lessons for how the nature of reporting news can successfully leverage social media platforms in positive ways.

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Part V: We Need to Fix the News Media, Not Just Social Media—Part 2

This blog post is part of our long series on platform competition, and a sequel to Part V: We Need to Fix the News Media, Not Just Social Media -- Part 1, which noted the decline in the quality of journalism and the increasing public distrust of traditional newspapers and broadcast news. While the following post acknowledges that there are real information problems triggered by social media platforms, including extreme headlines, hyper-partisanship, and radicalization, it proposes that the underlying distrust with the news industry should be addressed first. To do so, PK Senior Vice President Harold Feld calls for a policy intervention to repair the reputation of journalism and to adapt journalism to the digital age, while incorporating the positive power of platforms.

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