Message from the publisher | March 20, 2020 | Mountain View Voice | Mountain View Online |

Mountain View Voice

News - March 20, 2020

Message from the publisher

Why your support is needed, at this pivotal moment, to sustain local journalism

by Bill Johnson

These are frightening and disorienting times, and on behalf of our organization I wish you and your families the strength we all need to get through the weeks and months ahead. I'm afraid the impacts will be profound, but am equally confident that we will pull together to get through it.

Local news organizations and the journalists who work so hard to provide their communities with reliable and thoughtful news were endangered long before the COVID-19 crisis hit.

But today's public health emergency, and the economic devastation that threatens all small businesses, may very well be the final blow that ends local journalism as we know it.

Across the country, even local newspapers that are adapting to the migration of readers to the web and are successfully transitioning from print publishing to online publishing face an existential threat to their survival.

We, unfortunately, are among them. But since we are betting our future on you — loyal readers who understand the importance of an independent press to our democracy — we remain optimistic.

I started our company 40 years ago with the help of 14 local residents who believed in the need for an independent and locally owned newspaper that would be responsive to the community and dedicated to producing thoughtful, quality journalism that is trusted and respected.

We've successfully managed our way through many economic ups and downs, including the dot com bust, the launch of Craigslist, Google and Facebook, 9/11, the 2008 financial collapse and Great Recession and many other challenges large and small. And we were at the forefront of the news industry back in 1994, as the first to publish the entirety of our editorial content on the web. We have expanded our editorial staff to deepen our coverage and to provide a 24/7 news service.

But the COVID-19 crisis represents, by far, the greatest threat to the survival of good local news organizations. While advertising revenues are plummeting, the work we do has never been more urgent. Our reporters and editors have been working around the clock to keep you informed on every angle of this terrible story, now working from mostly from home but venturing out into the community when necessary.

If readers who value journalism don't step up to support their local newspapers and their websites now, many will become additional victims of the coronavirus crisis.

Local news has been funded primarily by the advertising of independent local retail businesses. But as local retail has struggled, cut its ad budgets and all too often gone out of business, most local newspapers have had to cut costs, usually by reducing staff, to stay in business. It's a recipe for failure because when staffs are cut, good journalism isn't possible and readership quickly evaporates.

We are determined not to let that be our fate. Mountain View needs its local news organization.

Our ask is simple: Please join your many neighbors and support the work of our staff in bringing you Mountain View news. For as little as $5 per month, you can make a difference. Go to to get your subscription membership started.

Thank you, and best wishes to all of you who are doing your best to get through this difficult time.


4 people like this
Posted by love the voice
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Mar 21, 2020 at 12:49 pm

Well, there goes my alternative supply for toilet paper

7 people like this
Posted by Ron
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Mar 21, 2020 at 6:39 pm

Thank you MV Voice for keeping us on top of local news during this unprecedented experience. You guys make an important contribution to our community. I am a long time reader and just subscribed, best wishes.

9 people like this
Posted by Gary
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Mar 21, 2020 at 9:44 pm

I just watched on cable tv an old episode of the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour - shortly after the November 1968 election to the Presidency of one Richard M. Nixon. The Smothers brothers sang a song about the threatened extinction of newspapers with the new dominance of network television. And they joked about President-elect Nixon who would prove to be a lying despot. The Nixon regime ran the Smothers Brothers off the air by June of 1969. 50,000 Americans died in Vietnam: hundreds of thousands were seriously injured. Nixon and his accomplices lied about the war year after year before finally declaring victory and fleeing from the neighborhood. Many newspapers hung in. Nixon eventually was forced to resign - but not until well into his second term. Thanks goodness we learned to not elect a lying despot and to continue to support and consult newspapers.

5 people like this
Posted by Ellen Wheeler
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Mar 22, 2020 at 12:51 am

Thank you for your continual high quality coverage of our community. We are very fortunate to have you. I am a longtime subscriber and believe subscribing is good for us and good for me.

11 people like this
Posted by Trump fired the national pandemic team
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2020 at 9:34 am

Gary - ouch.

Well written, sir. Have you read: "Dangerously Funny: The Uncensored Story of The Smothers Brothers" by David Bianculli (you'll know his distinctive voice from NPR.)

3 people like this
Posted by ZDQ
a resident of another community
on Mar 23, 2020 at 9:45 pm

Hello from Sunnyvale,
I'd like to subscribe to MV Voice right away for 12 months. Will someone remove the auto renewal clause and instead keep it optional for a customer to decide to renew at the end of their billing cycle.
Best for all your hard working crew in Editorial, Sales and Circulation!

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