News Deserts in America: The Fast Facts

In the last 15 years, the landscape of U.S. news has changed drastically. National newspaper giants (like the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and USAToday) continue to grow, while local news publications vanish. As more newspapers and journalists disappear, many American communities become “news deserts.”

In their 2020 report, “News Deserts and Ghost Newspapers: Will Local News Survive?“, the Univ. of North Carolina Hussman School of Journalism and Media examines the prevalence of news deserts and their impact. The infographic below highlights the fast facts of expanding news deserts and shrinking local newspapers.

Take a look at the stats you should know.

news desert infographic

As you can see, over the last 15 years the U.S. has lost one-fourth of its local newspapers. This trend of vanished local newspapers disproportionally impacts low-income communities and places them at risk to become more overlooked. As local newspapers shut down, more communities lose access to credible news sources. These communities rely on these sources to highlight issues and events that impact their daily lives.

Check back tomorrow for an in-depth look by Kevin LaTorre at the fall of local news and the negative impacts this trend has on local communities.

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