Thursday, April 24, 2008

GateHouse Plus buried, replaced by niche division

Niche magazines and pages, seen by GateHouse Media, Community Newspaper Holdings, and other newspaper chains as a way to invigorate their print product, are already contributing to the destruction of newspapers.

It had already started when I left newspapers nearly a decade ago and it has steadily increased ever since. Actual local lifestyle reporting has been replaced by these generic niche pages, usually poorly written and offering nothing more than a way to convince advertisers they are receiving something of value.

I have written about the destruction of the lifestyles and editorial pages, once key ingredients in successful community newspapers in favor of one special section or niche product after another. These moves have hastened the flight of readers from traditional newspapers to the internet.

At least for a long time, GateHouse Media was helping the local economy by basing its GateHouse Plus niche division in Joplin. When now-departed GateHouse official Randy Cope began losing his influence in the company, it was obvious GateHouse Plus was not going to remain in this area.

The GateHouse website details the launching of GateHouse News Service Niche Division.

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