Where Have All the Stories and Voices Gone in Local Newspapers? The Effect Falling Advertising Revenues and the Rise of the Web Have Had on English Regional Newspapers
AffiliationUniversity of Derby
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AbstractThe regional newspaper industry in the UK is in freefall with sales down more than 60 percent in 10 years. With this decline has come cost-cutting. This study looks at how these cuts have manifested themselves in terms of the number of news stories now being printed in newspapers and the number of local people being quoted in the newspapers. The study has looked at a number of regional newspapers across 30 years to show the effect of the changing face of the newspaper business as the audience and advertising have moved online. The research includes interviews with experts on whether story count mattered and if fewer stories and local voices have damaged the product. This paper finds that generally newspaper companies with a web-first culture have been forced to reduce their local news content in their printed products as they concentrate their resources online. While fewer stories and voices cannot be blamed for the complete demise of the newspapers, it is a consequence of cost-cutting and disadvantages the product. Opinions do vary on the needs for high story count, but this paper shows that most experts believe it is important and that without it, printed newspapers have been damaged.
CitationBowyer, R. (2021). 'Where Have All the Stories and Voices Gone in Local Newspapers? The Effect Falling Advertising Revenues and the Rise of the Web Have Had on English Regional Newspapers'. Athens Journal of Mass Media and Communication, 7(4), pp. 221-238.
JournalAthens Journal of Mass Media and Communications