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Editor issues warning over social media ‘pollution’ in farewell column

Brad Jones 2022The editor of two regional dailies has signed off with a warning about how social media has “polluted” public discourse.

Brad Jones has urged readers to support local newspapers as “trusted sources of information” after saying farewell to his 26-year career with the East Anglian Daily Times and Ipswich Star.

Brad, pictured, revealed in June he was leaving the Archant sister titles to become head of communications at Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils.

In a farewell editorial, Brad discussed the changes he had seen over the course of his career.

He wrote: “Technology has dramatically changed what we do, everyone knows that. It’s never been easier to access content, and everyone can now be a publisher.

“Social media means we are bombarded with information, public discourse is polluted with opinions masquerading as facts.

“So it’s vitally important for our brands to be trusted sources of information, and to deliver public interest journalism.

“We have worked hard to do that, taking our responsibility of being a trusted news provider seriously. And if we ever get it wrong, we’re always honest about it.

“I have loved my time in the industry, made some great friends, and will always champion the importance of local newspapers – they really are a vital part of our democracy.”

Archant’s outgoing director of content development Laura Adams has taken interim charge of Brad’s titles while a successor is ought.

Brad added: “Looking ahead, I am excited to move into a new role with Babergh and Mid Suffolk councils next month. It is time for a new challenge for me.

“I’ll sign off by thanking all my colleagues, past and present, for their brilliant work and support. I am leaving behind a fantastic team of people.

“Thanks to everyone for their kind comments since my departure was announced.

“And a final thank you to you, our readers. Without you, we couldn’t do this.”