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Only 3,000 Subscribe to InDenverTimes.com

As reported previously here, the tearful failure of the venerable Rocky Mountain News daily newspaper after almost 150 years in business was to be followed with better news: a group of innovative, feisty staffers were scheduled to start publishing an online newspaper, InDenverTimes.com. But before going online, the goal to be met by late April was 50,000 paying subscribers at $5 per month ($3 million per year). However, only 3,000 subscribed, a mere 6 percent of what they needed, and so for now InDenverTimes.com is looking for backers and a new business model.

This would have been a real example of “citizen journalism”: people believing that their role as citizens involves supporting a local news source that could help inform the community as to what is going on. It seems that we are heading for more reliance on government (isn’t that what Republicans are against?) for information, lots of highly opinionated commentators, and a myriad of social networking sites that will inform us in some important ways but lack the resources to do any serious investigative reporting. What happened to enlighted self-interest?

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