Billionaire investor, Warren Buffet, told his stockholders the future of newspapers in America was very bleak due to declining advertising. He stated in blunt terms: “For most newspapers in the United States, we would not buy them at any price. They have the possibility of unending losses. I do not see anything on the horizon that sees that erosion coming to an end.” Buffet owns a major share in the Washington Post and Buffalo News, but will hold on to those investments due to a sense of social justice. He is working with newspaper unions to find ways of allowing the papers to continue functioning.
We propose there is need for action that will help ensue the survival of the American press.
1. Allow newspapers and magazines to send their material without paying any postage. This will enable them to reach out to subscribers.
2. Encourage newspapers to become not-for-profit organizations. This would also allow them to seek endowments to help defray costs.
3. Have online newspapers charge a modest fee of $3 per month to readers.
4. Create a fund that would offer no interest loans that would be composed of private funds and matching government money.
5. Create a National Press Corps composed of reporters who would receive government grants and could work for any periodical recognized by a nonpartisan government body.