This week, Carrboro Citizen celebrated its second anniversary. I explained in detail before their model and why I think this is the future of journalism. Now, the Editor, Kirk Ross, gives us the inside story:
You can’t be in this business without wondering how much wilder the ride can get. I’ve written about this before, so I’ll spare you the wind up. The talking points are that not every newspaper is in trouble and that most that are hurting are chain-owned metro dailies burdened by debt brought on by a mergers-and-acquisition craze reminiscent of the Dutch tulip bubble.
To be honest, when we started that was a pretty lonely place. Some of the better business minds in the area were quick to point out that we were daft since print is a dying part of the information industry. Our contention was then, and is now, that print may be shrinking, but it is hardly dying. Having the opportunity to start from scratch, post Internet, provided us with the chance to incorporate a lot of hard-learned lessons.
But all that and the print product too would be worthless without the one thing that gives purpose to our endeavor: journalism. It is quality work, solid reporting and good storytelling that empties the racks each week. Technological advances can enhance that, but not replace it.
If there is anything that underlines the insanity of the current situation in newspapers, it’s seeing another round of layoffs at a paper that is still turning a profit. I’ve had a lot of very sobering discussions of late with young people interested in taking up journalism. They are genuinely worried, and rightly so. They know that for the near term their chosen profession is on shifting sands.
You hold in your hand the first issue of the third volume of The Carrboro Citizen. Each week, more than 5,000 people like you prove to those students and to us that there is a future for journalism.
Emphases mine. Yes, this is the only newspaper I read in hardcopy. And the only newspaper I truly enjoy reading instead of cussing and cursing at the idiotic coverage of news or silly editorials which other papers serve. May they publish on paper forever!