The biggest loss here is to the local regions, whose local bands and venues have essentially lost their voice and print representative.
At least with regards to discovery, print is a horrible medium for local bands. Where are you reading street press? At a cafe or on a train, most likely. I’ll stretch to a bar. By the time you’ve reached a condition in which to properly explore those bands, you’ve already forgotten their name. Chris said something about this somewhere (maybe on the podcast): if you’re really gonna proselytize about a band, you need to use multimedia. Videos and songs to accompany the text. Every time I read Pitchfork, for example, the first thing I do is stream the song(s) above the review. Mess+Noise do a similar thing embedding SoundCloud links. The only thing street press has going for it is credibility for promotion and touring companies to use for coverage but a) most of their live reviews are abhorrent anyway and b) blogs and websites can build credibility the same way those magazines did. More efficiently, even, because it’s so much easier to start building up content as well as an audience (not easily, but at least easier) right from the get go without the hassle of physical production and distribution. It also speaks volumes that of the bands on the magazine covers in the header image, you’ve got My Chemical Romance and Kasabian (and three others I don’t recognise but I feel safe in saying they’re not exactly underground). Street press aren’t in the business of giving local bands and venues a voice to a fraction of the degree that they’re in the business of leveraging huge bands to attract readers, no different than NME or whatever happens to be your least favourite big-name dinosaur music rag.
The only reason to mourn the imminent demise of street press are the lost opportunities for new writers. I got started in street press and I’m sure thousands of other writers did too. The trade-off for the generally low standard of writing* is that it gives a platform for writers to build up clips with a credible publication but again: credibility. You can earn it yourself. The barrier for entry has never been so low. And a good editor is gonna care more about the writing behind the URL than simply that it has a recognisable name. I’m incredulous that so many people seem to be wringing their hands that street press has a grim future. I love print as a medium but the loss is only as devastating as losing a relationship which in hindsight really sucked anyway.
* There are really great writers who wrote for street press long after their start. Doug Wallen, who as far as I’m concerned is the most prolific and respectable music critic in the country, still does interviews for Inpress, and Clem Bastow set the standard for singles reviews with her weekly column right up until she quit music criticism altogether. There are quite a few others, I’m sure, but those two are the ones I’m most familiar with, and they’re both statistical outliers.