Southern California News Group Asks for Public Support, Ponders Nonprofit Status Amid Steep Cuts for Local Newspapers

The Southern California News Group, which includes the Orange County Register and Los Angeles Daily News, is pushing back against its owner, Digital First Media, calling for public support in the face of steep cuts that have hollowed out its newsrooms.

An undated photo shows a sign for the Orange County Register. (Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

An undated photo shows a sign for the Orange County Register. (Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

A series of opinion articles published in print Sunday across the local chain urged readers to pay for professional journalism and pondered a nonprofit ownership model that “plows proceeds back into smart local reporting and civic engagement.”

In 10 articles that went online Friday, editors and current and former reporters didn’t mention Digital First or its controlling owner, Alden Global Capital, by name — eschewing the approach taken by the Denver Post, another DFM paper, which referred to Alden as “vulture capitalists” in its own editorial published earlier this month.

But SCNG Executive Editor Frank Pine wrote that the loss of journalists keeping a watchful eye on communities is a threat to democracy and that if the “Fourth Estate as we know it is to survive, it will require ownership that is invested in its long-term success and a strategy that prizes purpose over profit.”

Read the full story on LATimes.com.