Death of the Daily News

Daily News

Founded in 1878, the Yale Daily News (YDN) is the oldest college newspaper in the United States. It is published every weekday during the academic year. Many of its student editors and writers have gone on to prominent careers in journalism and public service, including William F. Buckley, John Hersey, Lan Samantha Chang, Sargent Shriver, and Strobe Talbott.

YDN has been recognized for its commitment to open access and innovation in digital publishing, for its extensive coverage of student life on campus and in the community at large, and for its longstanding tradition of journalistic integrity. Its online Historical Archive contains digitized versions of more than 140 years of printed YDN issues.

The obituary of local journalism has been written and rewritten so often that it can seem redundant by now. But that doesn’t mean the story isn’t worth telling. In Death of the Daily News, Andrew Conte provides a poignant and illuminating portrait of one small town’s experience with loss of local news—and offers hope for a future in which communities can regain control over their own information.

This is the history of what happened when a major-league tabloid, once the largest-circulation newspaper in America, went under. Conte focuses on what the Daily News meant to its readers, and how those people tried to fill the gap when their paper was no longer there to give them their local information and entertainment.

Conte’s deep reporting and sensitive storytelling make this book a must-read. It is a thoughtful study that will be useful to journalists, civic leaders, and anyone interested in the future of media and democracy.

The New York Times has called this book “a rich and fascinating anatomy of what happens to a town when its newspaper dies.” That is the perfect description of it, and of what we need to do to revive local news.