The Wall Street Journal and public goods

Martin Wolf is devastating about Rupert Murdoch in the Financial Times (subscription required):

Down-market is the direction  Mr Murdoch knows. That has been the direction in all of his publications with which I am familiar.  Mr Murdoch can take substantial credit for the tide of vulgarity that now floods the UK. For good or ill, he has helped transform my country.

But it’s Wolf’s peroration that is important:

A cynical employee of the FT might argue that any faltering of the Journal can only be to its benefit. I am not that cynical. The world needs at least two respected, editorially independent and authoritative English-language business papers. One is too few. None would be a catastrophe. Great newspapers are more than just businesses. They provide the public good of reliable information on which our knowledge-intensive society depends. Competitive markets do not provide public goods well. We may discover quite soon just how bad at it markets can be.

2 thoughts on “The Wall Street Journal and public goods

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