Vermont media vie for advertising in Senate committee today

by Guy Page

A battle in the Vermont media over a lucrative revenue source is shaping up in the Vermont Senate.

A Vermont Senate committee is reviewing a bill that would allow much of state and local government ‘legal advertising’ to be published on electronic-only news websites – such as (for example) VT Digger or Vermont Daily Chronicle. State law currently directs government legal advertising to traditional, printed, hold-in-your-hands newspapers.

S174, sponsored by Senate Government Operations Chair Jeannette White (D-Windham), is scheduled to be reviewed in Senate Gov Ops at 2:30 pm today. Scheduled to testify are two well-known Vermont journalism figures: Michael Donoghue, Vice President, Vermont Press Association, and Anne Galloway, Executive Director, VT Digger.

The VPA constitution limits active membership to “bonafide newspapers,” although wire services, freelance writers, college journalism departments, and newspaper industry vendors may participate as associate or sustaining members. However, there is no specific provision for online news-only membership or participation.

VT Digger is perhaps the best-read, most-staffed Vermont news outlet – and it is published completely online, although some print newspapers republish its news articles.

While Vermont newspapers have seen significant decline over the last two decades, and especially during the pandemic, online news outlets have thrived, relatively speaking, and none more so than VT Digger. With more readers consuming news online, and without needing increasingly expensive, hard-to-find printing services, online news outlets like VT Digger have lower costs than newspapers.

It also has a sophisticated marketing staff that is well-positioned to seek legal advertising that is now almost exclusively sold in newspapers. State law obliges state and local governments to print notices of meetings and proposed changes in ordinances and bylaws. The proposed law would continue to require legal ads regarding property to be published in newspapers.

If S174 passes, the cost of legal advertising would likely drop due to competition – a benefit to taxpayers. However, it also would imperil the future of newspaper publication in Vermont – an arguable loss to taxpayers and other citizens who rely on community and regional newspapers for important state and community information.

Senate Gov Ops livestreams its meetings on YouTube.

Categories: Media

Tagged as: ,

17 replies »

  1. That VT Digger is read at all reflects the character of those who indulge it. Today’s Danziger cartoon, for example, is as repugnant as any of his worst, and, because Ms. Galloway’s persists with the publication of this grotesque propaganda, I have no choice but to hold her in equal esteem.

    I can only hope that VDC and its readers never stoops so low, regardless of the behavior expressed by this progressive left publication.

    • Well, on one hand, there would be cause for celebration to see another nail in the coffin of the Free Press (no truth in advertising since they are anything but supporters of “free”). On the other, more benefit to Digger which is an outlet that is anything but Journalism. Rather, a partisan Marxist publication for the minds of mush shaped by Leftist ideology. The silver lining here is an opportunity for VDC to gain ground on the Leftist domination of Media in the State of Vermpnt. This should be the kind of change we all support.

      • Vermont Digger pushes a very leftist proclivity. See their very close relationship to the NY Times. And “sophisticated” staff is another description of “Progressive” influence. i cancelled as soon as I recognized Digger bringing in speakers from the NYT. Check out their backgrounds!

    • The VTDigger has a policy that prohibits making gratuitously negative comments. Many of you may have been silenced by the VTD moderators for allegedly making gratuitously negative comments while attempting to make a post on the site.

      Meanwhile, Danziger has been able to operate on the VTDigger while consistently using gratuitously negative attacks against people on the right. One of his favorite targets is poor white people who are portrayed as supporters conservative values…….Danziger does not limit his targets to poor while people…….Anyone of anything that represents conservative thinking is a target for Danziger.

      If you attempt to write something perceived to be gratuitously negative by a VTD moderators, you get cancelled……..Danziger writes something gratuitously negative, he gets published and paid.

      Has anyone else ever noticed a double standard of what constitutes being “gratuitously negative” at the VTD?

      • As curious as I am to look at Digger occasionally, i resist the temptation to avoid putting click dollars in their pockets. I used to send them a check now and then but since they have turned hard left, support Danzinger and no longer allow comments, I do my best to starve the beast.

    • Today is Jan 21 according to your comment date. The Jan 21 comic is of Putin driving a tank over the world. How is that repugnant? How is that propaganda? I guess it’s not if you have some sort of odd admiration for Russia.

      • This was the cartoon until a couple of hours ago.

        Of course, you could have ‘researched’ this yourself, as you have so many other points of view presented here on VDC, instead of being a VTD apologist. On the other hand, perhaps you don’t find this cartoon as repugnant as I do. That’s your choice and you’re entitled to it.

      • If your issue was with the Jan 19 comic you should have said that originally instead. We’re not mind readers. I researched the comic you referenced originally and asked what the issue was. How is anyone supposed to know that you actually meant Jan 19 when you said “today” on Jan 21…

      • Arguing over one or two individual cartoons published over a couple of days on the VTD totally misses the point in understanding the venom of Danziger’s attack that is consistently aimed at conservative individuals and values.

        Danziger’s cartoons must be viewed in the entirety over their history on the VTD. A history that will show a heavily biased and repugnant track record against the right. This in its self is not the problem…….Conservatives can defend themselves when attacked on substance.

        The problem is the nasty manner in which Danziger portrays groups of conservative people. From the left, an example would be uneducated and poor southern white people who are deemed to be conservative. Danziger cartoon’s have portrayed them as being lazy and living in shacks with pigs and chickens running…..And there are other groups also targeted with Danziger’s venom.

        It is the broad, consistent and long term record that makes Danziger’s cartoon’s repugnant to so many……It’s not just what’s produced over a day or two.

  2. No. It’s not a ‘dumb’ remark. It’s indicative of the effects of indoctrination pervading our society today. We must understand it and respond in as honorable a fashion as we can.

    After reams of your commentary, Christian, claiming to know the inner thoughts of others with whom you disagree, all of a sudden, it’s my fault that Digger curiously rolled the cartoon within hours of my reference to it, and you couldn’t figure it out.

    “What makes them marxist?” … you asked. Not only the refusal to accept responsibility for one’s actions and assertions, but the constant gaslighting of those who do accept that responsibility.

    Danziger’s cartoon is repugnant! As have been many of them before. And as I’ve discussed with her in the past, that Anne Galloway’s VT Digger propaganda rag persists in publishing this Danziger tripe is a reflection on her character, as well as Danziger’s, not to mention the people who support VT Digger.

    Again, one of my sincere hopes is that VDC and its readers don’t ever stoop so low. As I’ve referenced before:

    “Beware that, when fighting monsters, you yourself do not become a monster… for when you gaze long into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.” ― Friedrich W. Nietzsche

  3. VTDigger is a perfect example of corrupted journalism.
    In order for them to receive their funding dollars from the State/Feds/covid, they HAVE to conform to the muffled silence of people with a variety of opinions.
    If your skin isn’t the right color, or your feminism not on display, or you hail from three generations of Vermonters, you’re not deemed (by the magic measuring stick of Marxism) useful, and thus worthy of cancelling, literally in some cases, to death.
    This just follows through with the underlying Eugenics agenda the State of Vermont built its relationship with DC on…predicated our healthcare funding on.
    We’ve ALWAYS been stooges of the Fascist Fed, and Galloway is the chief in state stooge.
    All the divisive labels the CCP loves, are stuck on the door of her office to check off and sign before entering the heights of Mt. Olympus where she deigns to decide what is good for us to know, and keeping back anything that might confuse the narrative, I mean our pea brained minds she apparently has assigned to most of us.
    If the VTDigger had not been bailed out by federal and state dollars, it would’ve gone under with all the other Vermont businesses.
    Gotta fund your loud speaker when you’ve got a narrative to roll out.

    • I’ll go out on limb here and state that Marx never once defined ‘degrees of Vermontness’. I assume that the ‘eugenics agenda’ can be quoted or linked to? Also can I get a piccie of that sign from the CCP on the door. You know, just to confirm the factual validity of what you are saying. No doubting you in the slightest, just doing a Reagan and “trust but verify”.

    • VtDigger is also heavily funded by grants from facebook so if you’re looking for any of form of journalistic integrity or lack of conflicts of interest, look elsewhere.

      Basically Anne Galloway has to have everything fact checked by her facebook overlords before putting it up on the site.

      I believe FPF operates the same way.

      The upshot is no matter where most Vermonters get their news, it all comes from the same corporate spigot.

  4. Bill Schubart writing for VTDIGGER epitomizes the “new” Vermont. He comes from enormous wealth. He and his half brother operated Philo Records where they absorbed recording costs charging nothing. I’ve been in their then studio. Bill had a suicide door Lincoln. Tens of thousands of vinyl lined the walls of the renovated barn. I’d never seen such wealth. So anything he writes about, I don’t go much beyond the headline. His life is affordable politics.

Leave a Reply