Buffett Says Free News Unsustainable

Bloomberg has a story that Warren Buffett Says Free News Unsustainable, May Add More Papers. The days of expecting news online to be free to access may be coming to an end. We may find more and more news behind paywalls of the sort the New York Times brought in where you only get so many free articles a month.

Buffett believes that local papers with a “community focus” can make a profit as they are often the only source for community news. There will always be free alternatives for national or international news, but community newspapers often don’t have free alternatives.

This bodes well for journalism which has suffered recently which in turn has, I believe, created a democracy gap as the fifth estate loses its ability to monitor the others. Bloggers don’t reliably replace investigative journalism that profits from reporting on government and industry.