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Letter: Reader relays decline of local news quality

To the Editor-

My husband and I have been watching the local news scene with much dismay over the past few years. It appears there have been many changes and few for the better.

I can appreciate the changes in technology. No, my greatest concern is the quality of reporting, or lack thereof, that serves our area.

The Stevens Point Journal once had a marvelous editor with Lisa Nellessen-Lara, who helped shine an excellent light on city government, local schools, and social programs. The Portage County Gazette has had a series of fabulous reporters and editors including Gene Kemmeter, Heather Macdonald, and Nate Enwald. I still see Mr. Kemmeter’s columns on occasion and I cherish them but I miss his reporting. A few years back another newspaper came out of nowhere, the Stevens Point City Times, with Brandi Makuski, Jacob Mathias, and Lisa Pett, and did some outstanding reporting on crime, local business, and local government.

While the Stevens Point Journal hasn’t really been a local newspaper for many years, about a year ago it seems like all of this great reporting in the Gazette and SP City Times [sic] has been replaced with a series of grammatical errors and disjointed writing. It appears longtime reporters were been replaced with less-qualified personnel who don’t understand the job.

There also appears to be a pronounced anti-law enforcement bias in local media stories which I don’t understand. Do we have unethical police departments and just haven’t been made aware?

Moreover, there appears to be a serious shortage of reporters who report the news, and this can only be a bad thing for our community. As taxpayers, residents, and voters, we deserve better service.

Roseanne Phile
Stevens Point

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