The Orange County Register is trying the propaganda route into saving a dead profession.
The whole "democracy is at risk" tantrum isn't actually true. Democracy is thriving online through social media.
Journalism was supplanted by a superior model, and that's a reality journalists have to accept once and for all.
Yes, news isn't free, and is expensive to churn out, but you cannot bully people into buying your product.
Yes, the business model is broken, but that's not the fault of citizens. When you stubbornly refused to change in a changing landscape, that's what happens.
You had journalists like me sound the alarm about twenty years ago, and I was ignored. This collapse was more than just obvious way back then, it was entirely avoidable.
Journalism had to make a series of adjustments to take into account the Internet's effect on the world: the business model was one, but the mandate, and methods were more important to tackle.
Once upon a time, if I wanted to be heard by a mass audience, I had to be dependent on journalists to give me legitimacy.
Now, I can write on my blog, go on Facebook, or Twitter, to achieve the same ends.
Journalists should have completely reinvented themselves to make themselves relevant. They had the money to do so. They had universities to act as their own laboratory.
None of that ever happened.
And now the profession is dead, and while you have people who are trying to co-opt the profession, they are doing nothing different, and are doomed to fail because they do not see the obvious.
We have a void in an Age of Propaganda -- it will take more than whining in a column to change a thing...