In The News

TVO, Opinion: Local news is disappearing in Ontario

Ryerson University, School of Journalism, journalism, local newspapers, community news, news, media, Northumberland Today, John MillerPostmedia owns nearly half of the daily newspapers in Canada, including the major papers in Ottawa and three provincial capitals (Edmonton, Regina, and Winnipeg). It owns all the daily newspapers in several large cities including Calgary and Vancouver. And Postmedia’s dwindling finances mean that it could have to shutter completely or sell off assets in the near future.

But more worrying than the fate of those major papers is the future for local news if Postmedia fails. The company owns most of the small dailies published in Ontario – 27, to be exact, in places like Chatham, Cornwall, and North Bay. In some of these communities, there is no other source of news, so Postmedia’s potential demise will affect those communities even more.

Northumberland Today is published weekdays in Cobourg and Port Hope, and since Postmedia took it over in 2014, the amount of local news coverage has dropped at an alarming rate. In 2008, 89 per cent of all its content – counting news, photographs and commentary – was local. Today, more than three-quarters of content is syndicated from wire news services like the Associated Press and The Canadian Press, and distributed to all Postmedia papers.

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