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Paper Cuts: When private equity firms control local newspapers

Local newspapers in south-central Indiana have seen steep circulation and staffing declines since being purchased by companies with strong private equity ties. What have the ownership changes meant for the communities being served by these Hoosier newspapers?

Paper Cuts: When private equity firms control local newspapers is a project on the influence private equity has had on local news.

The Paper Cuts team includes editor Bob Zaltsberg, reporter Sarah Vaughan, data analyst Jainish Shingala, researcher Cathy Knapp, digital editor Katy Szpak, digital producer Eoban Binder, and reporter George Hale.

The project is funded by a grant from the Poynter Institute and support from the Joyce Foundation.

Chapter 1: Ownership changes accelerate declines in area newspapers »

Listen to the radio version of this series:

The disintegration of local newspapers in South-Central Indiana shows up in staffing, circulation and local news content. Bob Zaltsberg walks through the history of Schurz Communications and the sale of its newspapers.

What does a community lose when it loses its reporters? Sarah Vaughan spoke with a former Bedford Times-Mail journalist to find out.

What's being done to preserve local news? Sarah Vaughan spoke with Hoosier journalists who are creating community-driven news to learn more.


Officials at Gannett would not talk to WFIU/WTIU for these stories. They sent a statement attributed to Jill Bond, news director of The Herald-Times.

Paper Cuts The reporting is supported by a grant from the Poynter Institute, a non-profit journalism school and research organization in St. Petersburg, Fla., and the Omidyar Network.

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