The Chronicle of Philanthropy has an opinion piece calling on the deep pocketed to assist daily newspapers in their struggle to keep communities informed.
I don't know. This feels too late and short sighted, since newspaper owners who think they know how to survive the game are usually the first to find out how little they really know.
Just ask the people working there: Romenesko.
At this point, big checks would seem to do more to stave off the inevitable than rescue an industry that for too long lacked the humility to break up bad management structures. Instead it gutted newsrooms to ensure those at the top got their legacy pensions.
As scary fast as changes are coming now, it feels as if the corporate lamentations that pitted bottom lines against journalistic values have started to quiet. The stagnant business culture is starting to face its mortality. New lines of thought are sprouting.
Our job is to keep pushing the principles of good journalism (SCOTUSblog has gotten well-deserved attention today for doing just that) and hope the new business models coalesce around them.
Because with the big-check largesse of a single person or foundation comes demands. Look at the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, which must contend with the singular benevolence of billionaire businessman and art (institution) collector Eli Broad: WWLA.
Does this mean the L.A. Times should turn the $1-million grant from the Ford Foundation? No. But the survival of news gathering institutions is going to depend on the largesse of lots of little checks: donors, members, subscribers, listeners, readers, watchers.