I think you missed a very important point in your analysis. The main three/four news feeds we had quit being fair and abandoned journalistic ethics. Instead, they became cheerleaders and influencers for the way they wanted society to see the world. When that bias became blatantly apparent (1992 elections where one outlet was renamed the Clinton News Network for their very one-sided presentation of news), viewers became disenchanted with the obvious bias. They then looked for more balanced sources. I think that was the reason for the rise in so many alternative news sites and outlets, some parroting what they saw happening in the mainstream media…. unashamed bias and political pandering for favors.
Give me a news channel that presents an impartial (as much as possible) presentation of facts and LET ME DECIDE. Don’t hire or rent your journalists to campaigns (can you say Stephanopolous???? or Brazile???? or all the fired and disgraced CBS anchors) and then pretend they are impartial. Don’t slant your stories to push your philosophy. Why is every republican or conservative identified in their name as “Republican Joe Blow” or “Conservative Mary James” and you NEVER EVER see a democrat or liberal labeled as such, especially when they’re caught with their hand in the cookie jar. I have to read or look up party affiliation on many corruption stories, only to find the majority of unnamed affiliation crooks are democrats!
But, I’m afraid the cows out of the barn and you’re stuck until someone comes along who has integrity, impartiality and the ability to deliver a good NEWS product.