The Future of News
We at the Trumpet have an intense interest in the news. Not only do we have a real interest in the news of the future, we have an ongoing interest in the future of news. Hence, when we received the latest journals from two high-profile journalists’ associations, both leading with pieces declaring concern about the parlous state of the news industry, we had to sit up and take notice.
“The media industry is disintegrating, the process is accelerating and we need to think how to repair it.” Thus spoke the Guardian’s investigative reporter Nick Davies in a February address to assembled journalists in southern England (NUJ Press & PR Branch Newsletter, March 2009).
Davies highlighted the plight of an industry that is caught in the grip of a downward spiral as cuts in staff at news organizations are in turn leading to journalists cutting corners in their research. The result is an increasing poverty of reporting. This, in turn, said Davies, has put the news industry on “the edge of an era of information chaos. … [W]e are facing a dying industry.”
Across the pond, in the latest edition of Quill, the journal of the Society of Professional Journalists (spj) in America, association president Dave Aeikens notes “several weeks of layoff announcements at news organizations across the country.” He highlights how some saw such action by one particularly well-known newspaper as being “a last-ditch effort to save a flailing company” (January/February 2009).
The indication is that there will yet be a lot more “last-ditch” efforts by a lot more flailing companies looming on the horizon within the news industry.
No Rosy Future?
“Future of news might not be rosy,” headlined the president’s column in Quill, “but there’s always reason to hope.” Yet hope seems to be a vanishing quality as the news industry continues to tank amid the ongoing, ever-deepening vortex of recession gripping the global economy.
On February 25, National Public Radio reported that the owner of Northern California’s largest newspaper, the San Francisco Chronicle, says if it “can’t reduce expenses dramatically soon, it will close or sell the newspaper. Hearst Corp. has made it clear that the cost-cutting will require a significant number of layoffs ….”
On Friday, the Rocky Mountain News, Colorado’s oldest newspaper, which printed its first edition in 1859, shut down its presses after producing its final edition. “The News is the latest—and largest—newspaper to fail in a recession that has been especially brutal for the industry amid falling ad revenue. Four owners of 33 U.S. daily newspapers have sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the past 2½ months. A number of other newspapers are up for sale” (Associated Press, February 27).
In reality, as Nick Davies astutely observes, “It’s not just about journalists losing their jobs. It’s about people losing their news” (op. cit.).
This is not just an Anglo-American phenomenon. Recently, concerns that the news industry was failing in France led President Sarkozy to promise an unprecedented handout of $800 million in emergency aid for the country’s newspaper industry. “He wants to boost the newspaper reading habits among young people in France, but many of them think the French press has too much opinion and not enough reporting” (npr, February 13).
All these newspapers offer online subscriptions, so it’s not just that they are losing out to the increasing dominance of Web-based reading. It is substantially because many of them no longer provide the service demanded by their consumers.
Just where can people go these days to find their news—real news that spells out the plain and simple, unvarnished, politically incorrect truth?
Despite the cloud of gloom that hangs over many of our highest profile news outlets today, the reality is that the climate for well-reported, clear and incisive news that avoids sophistry, and cuts to the heart of the matter, has never been healthier.
Telling It Like It Is
Proof that there exists within the public at large a thirst for provable answers to their concerns about the tumultuous current world events can be found in the dramatic rise in interest that our own publications have raised over the past year. This is occurring during a time of crisis in many a news enterprise as a result of dramatically falling subscriptions.
Dave Aeikens states that “[t]he problem is not audience. It is revenue. People are still hungry for credible news, and they seek it, especially in times of emergency and historic moments” (op. cit.).
But our publications have no monetary price attached to them! All our numerous publications come completely free of charge and without any obligation to the subscriber.
We are simply not dependent on our publications as a source of revenue! Our income is provided freely by the donations of those who willingly, by free choice, seek to support this work.
We are thriving, even as the big names in news are losing out, because we draw on a power to which the press and mass media of the world appear totally blind: the divine revelation of biblical prophecy!
Increasingly, our readers, drawn to us in these “times of emergency,” are checking our online archive and verifying that what we have declared for the past 20 years is in sync with that which that great newscaster, Herbert W. Armstrong, consistently publicized over much of the 20th century.
People are finding not only a powerful thread of consistency in the Trumpet’s successful forecasting of world events, they are also finding that these forecasts were, in multiple instances, underpinned by Bible prophecies, penned millennia ago. What’s more, they are finding that unfolding world events consistently fit a pattern of world news that was incisively prophesied by the greatest newscaster of all, Jesus Christ!
Our mentor in this unique way of reporting current events, by attaching them to the biblical identity of nations extant today, to history and to prophecy, Herbert Armstrong, declared (Plain Truth, October/November 1980):
The world has not known that Jesus Christ came as a newscaster, forecasting world-shaking news of the future. It is recorded in Malachi, chapter 3, verse 1, that Jesus was to come as a divine Messenger, bringing a supremely important message from the living God. Jesus taught that message to His original apostles. He sent them forth proclaiming that message. That message was Jesus’s gospel!
The word gospel means good news. In this case it was advance good news—to occur soon now in our time. The gospel of Jesus Christ is not man’s message about Christ. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the message that God the Father sent to mankind by His divine Messenger.
But news is a two-way street. There’s bad news and there’s good news.
Jesus Christ also prophesied the bad news of the extreme global events that are even now building before your eyes as great signs of His imminent return to this Earth! In fact, He declared future world conditions would become so bad that “except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved” (Matthew 24:22).
Where’s the good news?
One of the great challenges to news entities is the dearth of good news. There’s only so much bad news that an average human being can take before just switching off. Realizing this human tendency, the news media have experimented with making news more akin to entertainment.
Even former hard hitters on the cable news channels have softened their approach to satisfy audiences. Spicing their programs with sleaze and lurid details about the personal lives of people in the news, they have sought to avoid audience drift by titillating the baser drives of human nature. Yet none of this has stopped the leakage of readers and viewers away from the news channels or newspapers.
Where the Trumpet is different is in the fact that we seek to tell the news as it is, drawing on the best sources available, without any political overtones, without the bias of political correctness that substantially shades the news that emanates from commercial and government-controlled media.
And there is an even greater difference.
While pulling no punches with the bad news, we are able to offer the greatest message of unbridled hope ever opened to man—from the very voice of man’s Maker!
In a world of constant and confusing change, we declare “Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). We constantly remind our audience that there is an all-powerful God who declares, “I am the [Eternal], I change not” (Malachi 3:6). We regularly detail the unerring prophecies of God about current events and the future from their Source, the one who declares “the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure” (Isaiah 46:10).
With such a message, we are simply guaranteed a growing audience in these times of rapidly deepening global crisis as people search for answers—answers that commercial and government news commentaries simply cannot give.
We dare to tell you why—why you were born, why mankind, why civilization, why suffering of humanity is a necessary part of the human experience, why human nature, why global chaos, why great upsets in weather and why great so-called natural catastrophes! And with the why, we offer you the wherewithal to do something about it all!
These are the really big questions that news organizations fail to even ask, let alone seek to answer. They are only able to report phenomena, without any clear explanation as to the why, and certainly no real indication as to how and when the interminable suffering of mankind will end!
What’s the future of news? This publication gives you the answer. Following in the footsteps of our mentor, Herbert W. Armstrong, we continue to offer you “the plain truth about today’s world news and the prophecies of the World Tomorrow!”
Request our book Mystery of the Ages, which contains the answers to all the questions posed in this article.