New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says he would be open to funding local media in the Big Apple. During a discussion with former employees of the recently shuttered DNAInfo and Gothamist, de Blasio said having public media in the city would make coverage better and fairer.
“Do I trust the public sector to create fair and responsive media more than a bunch of rich individuals from multinational corporations? Of course,” he said.
“And if part of what we all need to do around the country locally is, the sort of do-it-yourself movement that is happening in cities around America on most issues is thinking about fostering our own media, to create more balance, I think that’s a really interesting idea.”
The comments were posted on Medium by former Gothamist city editor Christopher Robbins. De Blasio said that something similar to the BBC could be worth investigating depending on costs.
“Publicly-sponsored, with appropriate grounds. The BBC model, not always a perfect example, but in the best sense — there’s definitely a place for that,” he said. “We’d have to come up with really clear parameters, and yeah it couldn’t be too expensive.”
Employees of the websites, which were shuttered by its billionaire owner Joe Ricketts last month when they attempted to unionize, had never been granted an interview with a sitting New York City mayor. The discussion with de Blasio took place last Friday at the mayor’s official residence, Gracie Mansion, and covered a wide range of issues.