Sunday, September 29, 2013

"The Oregonian" also jumps on the "digital journalism" bandwagon

Rabin Man Shakya

"The Oregonian" is a city newspaper published in Portland, Oregon. But the newspaper is also distributed across the state of Oregon and some  neighboring parts of the state of Washington.

The Oregonian is about 50 years older than the Gorkhapatra, the grand old lady of the Nepalese journalism. The Oregonian was launched as a weekly newspaper in 1850 and the Gorkhapatra was also launched as a weekly newspaper in 1901 in Kathmandu.

The Oregonian, though a city newspaper, is one of the fifty largely circulated newspapers of the US. The newspaper has been awarded with prestigious Pulitzer Prize for seven times.

The Oregonian is the only general-interest daily newspaper serving Portland in particular and Oregon in general. This means there are no other daily subscription newspapers in Portland, though other cities of Oregon do have their own daily newspapers that are confined to their respective cities.

Across the US, thousands of local newspapers are published and distributed free of charge in newspaper boxes and at market place venues all over the US cities. The prominent freely distributed newspapers of Portland are: The Willamette weekly, The Portland Mercury Weekly and The Asian Reporter fortnightly newspaper.

Meanwhile, "The Oregonian" is currently making headlines in the newspapers of Oregon and Washington because it is going to curb home delivery to four-days-a-week. The newspaper is also going to lay off some staff as it is reorganizing its operations in order to jump on the "digital journalism" bandwagon.

Under the headline "A new era of digital journalism", a publisher's note was published on the front page of  The Oregonian on September 29, 2013 in which N. Christian Anderson, president of Oregonian Media Group explained  the reasons for moving to four-day-a-week home delivery.

"First, the marketplace dictates that if we are going to grow as a company, we need to be where our audience is. We're experiencing significant growth in both our digital audience and our digital advertising revenue," said Anderson.

Anderson went on to say,"Our new strategy is aimed at expanding our audience even more rapidly in the months and years ahead. One of the concerns we've heard about our new digital strategy is that we won't have serious journalism anymore. We will."

Well, is there any difference between reading The New York Times or The Oregonian in a real newspaper format and going through them in the digital format? Yes, for me there are lots of differences. And I believe I'm not alone to say this.

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