As its longtime editor leaves, what's the future of the LA Downtown News?

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Jon Regardie. Photo courtesy of Jon Regardie

For the past 15 years, journalist Jon Regardie has been reporting on Los Angeles and watching it change. Recently, his tenure at the Los Angeles Downtown News came to an abrupt and surprising end. His departure was not his choice. 

"The paper had been around for 47 years. But last month, it was sold to a new owner. So no, my departure was neither my decision nor my desire," Regardie tells Press Play. "But look, we’ve seen these things happen in newspapers across the country. It is part of the game."

With his departure and general pressure on the media these days, does Regardie worry there won't be eyes on people in power? 

"We've been seeing newspapers decimated across the country. While there's never been a better time for the spread of information, it's a really tough time for traditional journalism," he says. "There does need to be this watchdog approach...particularly for downtown LA, it really needs a strong voice, a quality publication able to comment and report on what's going on there. Because you're talking about multiple billion dollar projects in that area… So I'm really hopeful that not just the Los Angeles Downtown News, but weekly newspapers...TV stations, independent journalists across the country can do this job because it's vital." 

Credits

Guest:
Jon Regardie - former editor of the Los Angeles Downtown News - @DowntownNews

Host:
Madeleine Brand

Producers:
Sarah Sweeney, Michell Eloy, Amy Ta, Alexandra Sif Tryggvadottir, Rosalie Atkinson, Brian Hardzinski, Rebecca Mooney