Why Is Washington Singling Out Newspapers For A Tax Break Instead Of Journalism?

from the these-things-make-no-sense dept

We've discussed in the past the rather annoying tendency of some bemoaning the trouble facing newspapers (due to bad business decisions, such as taking on too much debt) of confusing "newspapers" for "journalism." They all too often assume that newspapers are the only source of journalism, when that simply isn't true. Unfortunately, it appears that politicians are guilty of the same basic fallacy. With reports that Washington State has created a special tax break for newspapers, Danny Sullivan is asking why isn't the tax break for journalism? By singling out newspapers, the politicians are effectively punishing journalists who work for other forms of media who didn't screw up their business, and rewarding the newspaper owners and management who made so many bad decisions.
Hide this

Thank you for reading this Techdirt post. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time. We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community.

Techdirt is one of the few remaining truly independent media outlets. We do not have a giant corporation behind us, and we rely heavily on our community to support us, in an age when advertisers are increasingly uninterested in sponsoring small, independent sites — especially a site like ours that is unwilling to pull punches in its reporting and analysis.

While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. Thank you.

–The Techdirt Team

Filed Under: journalism, newspapers, tax break, washington


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  1. identicon
    anymouse, 14 May 2009 @ 12:19pm

    But the paper industry is going to survive (at least one company will)

    Washington State just passed a bill that requires all State higher eduction institutions in Washington to start using paper produced with 100% recycled content (may be post consumer, not positive on that part).

    I'm sure it's just a coincidence that the individual who was responsible for getting the bill pushed through also happens to own the ONLY paper company in Washington that produces paper that meets the requirements (shipping on paper from out of state is even more costly than buying it from them, so no other options really).

    So not only are we (Higher Education) getting our budget cut by almost 30% over the next 2 years (Higher Ed got the shaft in this budget, and we get to pass it on to students with a 14% per year tuition increase that I'm sure they just love), we are now required to pay a premium on 'recycled' paper just to support the failing greys port paper business (name changed to protect... who really cares... it's close enough to be recognizable for government work).

    I wouldn't be surprised if this newspaper 'bailout' plan also included requirements on the type of paper that they will use for printing (that also just happens to only be available from one paper company in Washington).

    Wouldn't it be great if we could all pass legislation to ensure the survival of our own businesses?

    I think my tinfoil hat is too tight today, I'm getting a headache (or the rays are getting thru).....

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Make this the First Word or Last Word. No thanks. (get credits or sign in to see balance)    
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Special Affiliate Offer

Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Recent Stories

This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it
Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.