I for one support the idea of paywalls to generate income and return journalism to a user-pays service. Many would disagree I know, but I see no reason why the work of a journalist should be available for free online.
Funding broadcast journalism is another story and probably warrants a half-day discussion rather than a blog reply.
I've just stepped out of journalism and the rise of PR originated stories can be blamed on what I said - a lack of bodies and a lack of resource.
Then there's the very real added problem of producers/editors towing the populist line and telling their journalists the public wants gaga, one direction or whatever other crap over business, finance or other subjects with meat. Apparently the audience doesn't care about substance. That's when I walked...
I hope you also discuss the state of New Zealand media besides Rinehart. Editorial indepence for many media outlets here, especially TV, has been lost in a sense through cost cutting.
Decisions aren't overrun by boards or CEOs, but the lack of money and resource to get out of the city, to travel for a story that isn't a headline, to research is doing journalists' heads in and almost controlling content in a very unfortunate way.
Stories aren't covered, not because the journos aren't smart enough or interested enough, but because there's no money, no resource, no cameraman or whatever to get it done. Answer? Revert to accessible story, whether it ticks the news value boxes or not.
With that situation comes the reliance on stories that have been set-up by PR people. Talent comes to you, information handed to you... boat to the Island organised by DOC so you can see xy123 endangered bird released. There's a story fit for consumption! And more importantly it fills the duration!
Let's get some real discussion around what's wrong with the industry, what drives people out of the industry and how long the average grad journo will stay in the industry for now. Not long I suspect.