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Monday, July 8, 2019


Many posts have described the economic woes of the media industry.

Margaret Sullivan at WP:
Mere moments after the start of the hastily called community forum, the tears started to flow.

“Gobsmacked,” was how one Youngtown reader described her horrified reaction to the surprise announcement, just days before, that the city’s 150-year-old daily newspaper, the Vindicator, would publish its last edition on Aug. 31.


The paper’s demise is another blow for a region hit hard earlier this year by the shutdown of the sprawling General Motors plant in Lordstown, a 20-minute drive from downtown, which once employed 14,000. ...

With the Vindicator’s closing, Youngstown will become an unfortunate first: a good-size city with no daily newspaper of its own. (The metro area has more than 500,000 residents; the city about 65,000.) Many other newspapers have folded in recent years, but they were mostly weeklies; the dailies were in cities with a competing newspaper — that was not the case in Youngstown.
What this means, said Joel Kaplan, associate dean of Syracuse University’s Newhouse School, “is that no one in that community will be covering, on a regular basis, school board meetings, city council meetings, the cops and the courts. Democracy, as we know it, is about to die in Youngstown.”
The city and its surrounding Mahoning Valley have an ugly history of corruption. “Crimetown, USA — the city that fell in love with the mob” was how the New Republic magazine described Youngstown in a 2000 retrospective piece.