Corporate profits

Take corporate profits out of your news

Hedge funds are known to profit from everything they buy, leaving the wreckage behind when they move on to the next trade. Lately, they buy newspapers.

Hedge funds now own more than half of all US newspapers, according to a Financial Times analysis in 2021. But a nonprofit alternative is gaining strength.

In this episode of the podcast, Next City Executive Director Lucas Grindley talks with Sue Cross, Executive Director of the Institute for Nonprofit News, newsrooms that value public service over profit. Grindley also interviews Wendi Thomas, the founder of MLK50, a nonprofit newsroom she started in Memphis to serve low-income residents left behind by the for-profit newsprint model.

Hedge funds are “extractive,” Cross said. “They are not committed to covering the community and creating news as a community asset, but rather simply earning a profit.”

“I think a lot of journalists from for-profit publications want to serve the public,” Thomas said. “But that’s not the business model.”

Listen to this episode below or subscribe to the Next City podcast on Apple and Spotify.