Letters to the Editor: If local newspapers want to survive, they need to examine their liberal bias
To the editor: Your editorial on the existential crisis facing local newspapers does not mention perceived liberal bias. Many conservatives like me have long given up on relying on the “mainstream media,” yet I still subscribe to the Los Angeles Times and support other traditional media outlets because I so fervently believe strong news sources benefit their communities, even with their shortcomings.
Others are not so forgiving. Perhaps The Times and other papers could encourage ideological diversity among editorial staff, help their journalists confront their implicit biases and explore stories that are sadly ignored. I firmly believe your bias shows just as strongly through the events you don’t cover as those that you do.
Fox News’ ratings over the last decade suggest that there is a vast audience hungering for the other side of the story. I would love to see some major outlets, including The Times, step up and make a strong, public commitment to evenhanded journalism. Especially if done in a coordinated fashion, it could really help restore trust in legacy media as a whole and possibly bring back conservatives from relying on their own biased media outlets.
We cannot come together as a country if we retain this highly partisan and fractured news landscape.
Roland F. Foss, Los Angeles
To the editor: I agree with much of what your editorial says about the need for local news and some of the ways that it could be funded in the future. But the fact is that the old model is outdated and unsustainable. Printing sheets of paper to be delivered to your driveway only to be consumed in a matter of minutes is not long for this world.
Readers don’t want to pay for news, and advertisers are finding less expensive and more targeted ways of reaching consumers. So any plan to assist local news gathering and dissemination should concentrate on doing so online.
The challenge is to get more people interested in local news from credible sources. With the advent of Facebook, Nextdoor and countless other “sources,” what is lacking is a desire to connect the dots regarding local issues and solutions.
David Comden, Ventura
To the editor: The editorial reminds me of the joke about the man that kills his parents and then throws himself on the mercy of the court as an orphan.
Your articles and op-ed pieces denigrate conservatives, Republicans and Trump supporters, alienating that portion of the local populace. These items in The Times have gotten so bad at times that I have considered terminating my subscription on a number of occasions.
And you wonder why local papers are dying?
Emanuel R. Baker, Los Angeles
To the editor: Here I was thinking I was doing y’all a favor by hanging onto my print subscription. The truth is, I only use it as a guide for what I’m going to read in depth later online, and then leave it at the doughnut shop.
In absolute terms, I don’t suppose there ever has been a truly free press, but having a consummate prevaricator in the White House has made it more than obvious why it’s in the 1st Amendment. Likewise, the electoral college has made it clear that our democracy itself remains an abstract ideal.
In contemplating Memorial Day and “our most hallowed ground” this week, we must realize there has to be some things worth fighting for, though. What’s the point otherwise?
Ronald Webster, Long Beach
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