Warren Buffett on local news as the prime value of newspapers


When this blog began in 2008, one of the many reasons was the absence of local news in the Junction Area. The Knight Foundation had just given a news innovator a grant to study and develop “beat blogs”. The foundations value indication for local information blogs gave the author of this blog the validation of the idea, which had been a constant thought for me – that greater local news was needed in the Junction.

Last year the Toronto Star published a piece on how they were to provide greater resources to local news and place more of it in the paper.

Now one if the worlds greatest investors in the world has further highlighted the value of local news. Commercial news providers – both printed and digital – pet projects blogs including this blog have a long way to go provide their communities with greater local news content and delivery formats.

Text from Warren Buffett’s yearly investment letter.

Full article from which excerpt was taken click this line

“Newspapers continue to reign supreme, however, in the delivery of local news. If you want to know what’s going on in your town – whether the news is about the mayor or taxes or high school football – there is no substitute for a local newspaper that is doing its job. A reader’s eyes may glaze over after they take in a couple of paragraphs about Canadian tariffs or political developments in Pakistan; a story about the reader himself or his neighbors will be read to the end. Wherever there is a pervasive sense of community, a paper that serves the special informational needs of that community will remain indispensable to a significant portion of its residents.

…Charlie and I believe that papers delivering comprehensive and reliable information to tightly-bound communities and having a sensible Internet strategy will remain viable for a long time. ”

About the Knight Foundation

Click this line to visit the foundations site.

This excerpt from the Neiman lab article. Link to article and mp3
If you pay much attention to the journalism innovation world — or if you’ve been reading this site for long — you know that Knight is the biggest of big dogs in the space. They give more than $30 million a year to a mixture of startups, news organizations, coding projects, and other ventures they believe will help support the information needs of communities. Name a prominent nonprofit news outlet or journalism school — or, increasingly, a news-related open source project — and there’s a pretty good shot Knight has either funded it or been asked to fund it

3 Comments

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  1. Raymond says:

    I remember the West Toronto Weekly that for decades covered local news of the Junction area. As a kid I had a paper route (eventually three routes!) that provided me with my own money (never received any allowance). Became a cub reporter and even a columnist! All of this as a student. I remember the office at 2995 Dundas St. W. every time I eat at the Purple Onion across the street, (one summer I was the entire office staff on Wednesdays!) Most of all I remember the publisher Sam Wilson (R.I.P) who gave me a start in my working life including a glowing reference that I took to my first full-time real job.

    • junctionist says:

      That’s a nice story, Raymond. It’s great when one’s neighbourhood gives a person a positive start in life.

  2. junctioneer says: (Author)

    Hey that is a great Junction story, thks for putting up some Junction History,

    brings great memories of my 5 years as a stock-boy at the Junction Kresge’s

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