Newspaper Redundancies

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Culture, Media and Sport – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 2nd March 2009.

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Photo of Denis MacShane Denis MacShane Labour, Rotherham 2:30 pm, 2nd March 2009

I have an interest to declare. I am a former president of the National Union of Journalists, and my predecessor but one, Stan Crowther—whom you will recall, Mr. Speaker—had a lifelong career as a journalist in south Yorkshire. We all have problems with journalists—even you, Sir—but whereas it is possible to have politicians without democracy, I do not believe that it is possible to have democracy without independent journalism, and print media are essential: digital media could never replace them. However, we are seeing a massive erosion of our print media. Journalists are going out of the door regionally, locally and nationally. Lord Carter may be twittering away on the digital problems, but we need more urgent examination now of how we are to keep our print newspapers and trained journalists alive and in business.

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Steve Cross
Posted on 9 Mar 2009 10:47 pm (Report this annotation)

Democracy is not dependant on printed media such as the newspaper industry. As digital technology develops further it inevitably will replace or operate alongside print. We should not subsidise a newspaper industry which is not commercially viable. There are many different ways in which we learn of news issues both locally and nationally without reference to newspapers.