Excerpt from a letter by Thomas Jefferson to Edward Carrington.
Paris Jan. 16. 1787.
. . . . the basis of our governments being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right; and were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter. but I should mean that every man should receive those papers & be capable of reading them.
(The Thomas Jefferson Foundation)
Carroll, Erin C. “Protecting The Watchdog: Using The Freedom Of Information Act To Preference The Press.” Utah Law Review 2016.2 (2016): 193-243.
There is, however, another way to preference the press. It is one that does not involve money changing hands or discriminating between old media and new. Instead, it would give journalists a commodity that is fundamental to the public good they produce: information. Providing faster and better access to information about government activity would feed investigative journalism and give the press the heft it needs to better serve as a check against government at a time when the private sector seems far less willing than in the past to support it, and it has proven unable to adequately support itself.