The greatest casualties of changes in the newspaper industry aren’t just jobs.
Paul Steiger, editor-in-chief, CEO and president of the nonprofit newsroom ProPublica, argued Monday night that the newspaper’s traditional role as watchdog has also been lost.
Steiger spoke to a crowd of about 60 at the Reed Sarratt Distinguished Lecture through the UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication.
Steiger addressed faculty and students in Gerrard Hall about the state of print and online media and his organization’s role in a potential future for these fields.
“Today, print newspapers are in relentless financial decline brought on by rise of the Internet,” Steiger said.
“What this means besides dismay for jobless journalists is missing reporting. Most newspapers have vastly shrunk the size of their investigative reporting team, as those reporters are needed to fill up the daily paper.”
ProPublica is a free online nonprofit newsroom focused on investigative reporting.
The organization selects projects based on potential impact with a spotlight on public interest, Steiger said.
While Steiger mentioned obstacles such as skepticism surrounding ProPublica’s nonpartisan status, he stressed that the organization has won two Pulitzer prizes and receives millions of dollars in donations each year.