Master Theory

is creating a journalism platform based in Austin
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About Master Theory

Today, the state of the American press is poor. Most Americanssay the national division is a result of the national news media.
How did things get so bad? A key reason is the tragic ongoing decline of local news. The public has long trusted local news over any other source. But over the past two decades, local newspapers across the country have shuttered at the expense of national digital media companies detached from where Americans spend their time. That detachment holds digital media companies less accountable to reflecting the truth on the ground. Communities that lost valuable local news sources had little choice than to turn to national digital and cable news whose earnings are precisely derived from appealing to our worst selves through groupthink and discord. If it feels like all opinion is news nowadays, that's because its cheaper for media companies to a hire a pundit to talk than it is to pay a journalists to report on the ground. The result is a politically polarized media landscape that reinforces stereotypes, oversimplifies complex issues and is less reflective of Americans in real life.
We're here to set a higher standard for what an institution as influential as the press should be. The way we see it, journalism should be about more than editorial, but about providing sustainable ways to cultivate a deeper sense of community including through partnerships with local business, providing learning opportunities and collaborating with local artists. With your support, we can be a new kind of media company that seizes responsibility for leaving out community better than we find it.