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Los Angeles Downtown News asks readers to give back through $5 a month subscription

By Kylie Reynolds
Published: Friday, July 06, 2012, at 03:55PM
Flickr via NS Newsflash

Newspapers

Los Angeles Downtown News - which has been reporting on DTLA for 40 years - recently kicked-off a campaign asking readers to donate to the publication.

The "Support Local Journalism" campaign is calling loyal readers to start off by donating $5 per month or a "lump sum donation" to the paper. This is the first time Downtown News has made efforts to raise money from readers, said Sue Laris, the paper's editor, founder and publisher, in an email to Blogdowntown.

Financial concerns for the upcoming year or two pressed the paper into launching the campaign. Laris said Downtown News has cut more than a third of its expenses and successfully shouldered the recession over the past four years, but is now having to respond to the changing media industry and economic challenges.

"Now the recession has pressed Downtown News too far," Laris said.

The donation campaign - if successful - will allow the paper to maintain its current services, she said. There are no plans in the works to change the editorial department, and there will be no staff reductions across the publication, according to a Downtown News article on the campaign.

Readers will also still be able to access the DTLA paper, even if they do not donate.

"It makes sense to ask for help from those who benefit from the paper, but if they don't support us, they can still find news online daily and in nearly 1,000 newsracks weekly," Laris said.

Downtown News got the idea from the Palo Alto Weekly, whose parent company Embarcadero Media began a similar "Support Local Journalism" campaign a little more than a year ago. But Laris said Downtown News is doing the campaign a little differently to better suit its audience.

"We see a bright future for Downtown News because it's broadly acknowledged that community/local newspapers are the one part of the newspaper world that is doing well," she said.

Donations can be made through the paper's website, or sent to their Los Angeles offices.

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