The above cartoon is my contribution to a nationwide project called Net Needs News Day, conceived to remind people that, without traditional media organizations to gather and sift the news, the Internet with all its vaunted resources would consist of bloggers sitting around in their pajamas commenting on each others' Facebook postings.
Fellow members of my professional organization (yes, there is one), the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists, are drawing their own cartoons to be simultaneously published in newspapers this Sunday. Some cartoons will appear in their home papers, as this one will appear in the Sun Sentinel. To papers that do not have their own cartoonist, we are donating our cartoons so that they can receive wider readership.
This issue is a ticking bomb. At the moment, the specter of a newsless world is mostly the preoccupation of members of media organizations. The average Internet user, who has dropped his newspaper subscription and is accustomed to receiving his content for free, is slow to grasp that news gathering costs money, and that without all that expensively-acquired information, our democratic experiment could quite easily fail.