Quality local journalism is crucial if any town wants to keep residents engaged, informed and entertained with what is happening around their hyperlocal patch. If you can’t take an interest in the place where you call home, then don’t expect others outside of the area to show any support.
And it is with this very same approach that the new Gazette deserves a run of success. There is no easy way to put in place the transition from print to digital. Multi-national media corporations have yet to find the business model that will deliver a sustained commercial platform as the modern interweb takes hold. Offering up a daily digital edition in Colchester at least shows commitment to change.
Hyperlocal blogs are also looking for sustainable solutions, Comrades…
The Gazette has pitched in with a rather neat iPhone and iPad app. This is being offered up for free for the first seven days, and then reverting to a £4.99 subscription per month – or just under 25p per day. GREAT value considering the newsagent print price of 65p per day (50p for a daily print subscription.)
Various T & C’s need to be considered concerning auto-renewals. An Android app is set to follow. Oh – and you can even win an iPad in a competition carried in the paper today.
Clever – see what they’ve done there…?
Economics aside and The Gazette deserves to move forward with this phasing in of a joint print and digital strategy. It is an incredibly small team of talented journos and support staff that is passionate about the Sunny Colch news patch.
Recent stories covering crime in Colchester, Colchester United and even the #essexlion coverage has seen the team at the top of its game. They know not only the area but also the readership inside out. The Knives not Lives campaign is a case in point.
Accessing the content either in print or online seems something of a secondary argument – the coverage is superb, whatever form of delivery model you choose.
And so good luck to @TheGazette – you’ve got to pay for quality, but you can’t put a price on hyperlocal accountability via a first class local newspaper.