Monday, September 5, 2016

Billings Gazette ending reader comments; racist RC Journal should just go away

Historically in the bag for ethics-free right wing extremists like Steve Daines, John Thune and Mike Rounds Lee newspapers are media cripples.

The Rapid City Journal perpetuates it by allowing outrageous racist comments in their feedback section under articles published there and censors journalists like Jim Kent.

Last year Lee Newspapers of Montana eviscerated their Capital bureau.
What began as a noble experiment in conversation has been mired in name-calling, epithet and trolling. There have been at least four iterations of commenting on The Billings Gazette's website since it began. Each had a limitation on how much control it could exert. Few commenting strings stayed civil. That's why beginning Tuesday, we're turning off comments. The Gazette is not the first to do it. National Public Radio decided it was time to pull the plug on comments last month. We're not even the first in our company to do it — the Quad Cities Times is about two weeks ahead of us. [Billings Gazette]
Mike Dennison went to a Montana teevee station. Former Lee reporter, Martin Kidston recently launched the Missoula Current.

Gifted journalist, Emily Saunders, who covered Idaho politics left Boise Public Radio to work for Montana's Office of Public Instruction as communications liaison.

Tony Mangan left radio journalism in Pierre to work for South Dakota's Department of 'Public Safety' as its general voice.

Ben Dunsmoor covered Pierre during the legislative session: he left KELO teevee for public relations.

That pretty much leaves Bob Mercer to write the gloomy news from South Dakota's capital city.

The Gannett Company should buy Lee Enterprises which owns the Rapid City Journal and 45 other daily newspapers; but, Lee Newspapers of Montana could survive as part of a Bismarck Tribune, Rapid City Journal, Casper Star-Trib marriage and not become part of a Gannett takeover.

Whatever happens the Rapid City Journal should close reader comments, too.

In a related story former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is outraising alleged billionaire Donny Trump in red states South Dakota, Montana, Georgia and Arizona.

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