The ultra-liberal Seattle Times Op-Ed's the usual 21st century media line; the world is going to hell, only journalists can save us, and everything would be fine if it weren't for that darn Craigslist.
"Media companies, especially newspapers, are by default nearly the lone agents of the democratic form of government."
That statement is actually true, if your version of the word "democratic" uses a big D as opposed to a small d. The mainstream media companies you see today is what's left of 50 years of unchallenged "Democratic" mindset. The reason these bastions of liberal thought are failing is that the Internet age has made their bias apparent to people who, thanks to the Internet age, now have other places to get the news.:
"Reporters know that truth is fleeting, and that it changes in the palm of the hand like mercury. For just a moment, something is true. It is true because it is verifiable by other sources and true because of the checks and counterchecks that look for truth amid the haze of events... Foremost, a decent newspaper is the enemy of rumor and a citizen of its place. Blogs are not the enemy of rumor, nor is talk radio or cable television. Rumor is not the substitute for truth, and it takes journalism to sift for truth."
Actually it takes blogs, like Newsbusters, to sift for truth in newspapers because reporters know that truth is whatever they say it is. In the real world, truth is neither fleeting nor changing. But in a world where the public can call BS on a journalist with a mission, the truth probably does seem fleeting. For the record, it isn't truth when you pick your sources to agree with your premise and it isn't truth when an editor gets slapped down for merely suggesting that reporters "keep an open mind" on global warming.
"At this Times — the one here in Seattle and Washington state — the catastrophe of the optical/digital age almost caught up with us, but we are well into the age of transformation and finding ways to meld various journalism and circulation functions into a product... I see Craigslist as a negative-editorial product. Why? Because it claims the profits normally shifted to the newsroom. Without the obligations of journalism, e-commerce becomes the anti-newspaper."
What does it say about journalists that one would refer to the Internet age as a "catastrophe"? How myopic the view of this journalist to equate the public's free-speech to say or sell anything they want on Craigslist as a "negative-editorial product". How is it same moral relativist's who believe it's "a right" for all people to have "free" healthcare should also have to pay a newspaper tax to sell their own property?