I’m concerned about the future of local media. I have heard how many communities have lost their local newspapers, and even the Chicago dailies are a shadow of what they were at their height. In recent weeks our mailboxes have been stuffed with anonymous “news” mailers with “alternative facts,” filled with lies and distortions about candidates and policy issues. It’s frightening to think what would happen if that was the only source of print “journalism” around. In too many places across the country, that’s what it has come to.
Here on the greater West Side, we are fortunate to have reputable weekly news sources under the nonprofit umbrella of Growing Community Media (GCM). This new nonprofit incarnation of the Wednesday Journal and its sister publications provides solid reliable reporting of community news. All the way from Garfield Park through the suburban townships of Oak Park, River Forest and Proviso, residents now have access to feature stories and editorial coverage as well as the opportunity for local residents to share their viewpoints.
But even our 40-year-old local paper is on shaky ground; as newsrooms shrink and disappear around the country, GCM journalists are doing more with less. They have fewer staff and tighter budgets all while trying to help our community understand that hyper-local journalism is about more than news. Local news sources create healthier and more engaged communities.
You can help assure that this local treasure survives and continues to offer award-winning local coverage. This is good for democracy and for our communities.
Please consider doing the following:
Subscribe to your local newspaper (and read it!). It will be delivered to your door every week to keep up with what’s happening in your community.
Encourage friends and family to become subscribers too. This makes an excellent holiday gift.
If you are a digital news consumer, consider making a tax-deductible donation equivalent to the cost of a Wednesday Journal print subscription — $48.
Tell your friends to share this opportunity to invest in Growing Community Media and your newsworthy community. These donations are tax deductible.
If your circumstances allow, become a partner in good journalism with an additional contribution to Growing Community Media’s current, “Let’s Make a Match” campaign.
Let’s work together to ensure that reliable news coverage does not vanish from the Earth!