On Saturday, TP’s Matt Yglesias went on WNYC’s On the Media to discuss whether or not philanthropies should consider supporting the declining newspaper industry. Yglesias suggested that the “logic” of the traditional newspaper model is “not a logic that really makes sense in the present world” and that philanthropists should “find ways to fund new kinds of institutions”:
A newspaper is something much more than a just a venue for producing hard news stories. It’s a physical bundle of paper that bundles together stories of all different kinds: weather reports, sports coverage, arts, book reviews movie reviews. And there’s a particular logic to assembling that kind of bundle, but its an economic logic that has to do with the economics of printing and distributing pieces of paper and its not a logic that really makes sense in the present world. [...]
The question is do you want to channel [philanthropic funding] into this dying model that isn’t really working anymore or is it more important to fund news kinds of institutions? And, in particular, to identify exactly what it is that needs funding?