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[W]e’re asking all journalists, journalism educators, journalism students, media reform activists, and DigBoston readers who agree that the state journalism commission should be created to call your Mass state senator today and ask him/her to tell Sens. Eric Lesser (D - Longmeadow), Michael Rodrigues (D - Somerset), and Patrick O'Connor (D - Weymouth), who are on the conference committee, to keep the journalism commission in the final economic development bill.
[W]e’re asking all readers who are concerned about the collapse of local news media to contact your state representative and ask them to cosponsor Amendment #40 of H. 4879. The more cosponsors the amendment has, the more likely House Ways and Means will pass it. If that happens it has a good chance of making it through the full legislative process for this session. And becoming a law. Which would be a promising outcome for the future of local news in the Commonwealth.
Over the holiday weekend, my wife and I had occasion to take the commuter rail out to Dedham to a family gathering in memory of loved ones who have left us. As we walked the mile to my cousin’s place—through middle-class suburban streets nearly bereft of foot traffic (and, in some places, sidewalks)—I looked at the many houses we passed. And thought about the fact that, despite their generally tidy exteriors and the lush greenery all around them, we were walking through a “news desert” in formation.