NEWSWATCH by Thomas Griffith: Putting Emotion Back In


Newspaper editors once printed what they thought their readers should know, which subscribers out of their obligation as citizens dutifully read. At least that used to be the theory. It is no longer. Worrying over the declining readership of newspapers, particularly among the young, the American Society of Newspaper Editors has been polling and studying what readers—and non-readers—think of newspapers. The result comes as a shock.

Perhaps the most wounding discovery is how much people dislike the very professionalism that newspapermen pride themselves on most—the ability to transmit facts without bias or...

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