By: Jo-Ann Jennings
From: Wagoner County American-Tribune, Oklahoma


A professional news writer for a community newspaper can, by telling both sides of the story, keep the community current on what’s going on. Newspapers were meant to, and I’m thinking many still do, serve as a voice for the people.

Local newspapers are vital to a community because they talk about the news which affects people the most – what’s happening in their backyards, or what’s being built there. They talk about the need for a bridge to get them to work or a resident who’s freezing in her home and needs help.

When a community newspaper dies, it is cutting the local vocal chords of the community. Oh yes, some say they can always contact the nearest metropolitan newspaper, but metropolitan newspapers don’t have room for the news of all the suburbs.

There’s certainly not going to be much to put in the scrapbook about local entertainment and school functions.

There was a time when local business supported newspapers because they felt it was crucial to keep their neighbors informed. What kills local newspapers is many businesses are no longer doing that.

The Bixby Bulletin, which was older than the town, died four year ago. As the former editor, I still get calls, “Where do I send this?” I am asked, “How do we get our information out?”


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