Posted by: norstarnewengland | April 23, 2009

Changed: The Christian Science Monitor

One of my waymark posts is the headquarters to the Christian Science Monitor.  This newspaper had its 100th anniversary in November of 2008.  Little celebration occurred, however, since, around Halloween, an announcement was made that the paper would shift its daily news to its web site and print a weekly edition in the spring of 2009.

The last daily edition was at the end of March of 2009.  The weekly arrived on the week of April 12, 2009.  The new edition is printed on whiter paper and is printed in a magazine format rather than in the traditional newspaper format it was in before.  It looks really good.  The web site changed some, incorporating Twitter, video clips, and other media forms.  Both provide the same quality journalism that had been a hallmark of the paper throughout its existence.

When the announcement was first made, there was debate whether newspapers were really in that much trouble.  In a forum that the Monitor hosted in November 2008, the word was that big changes were coming and that the newspapers would have to develop whole new business models to survive.  A week after the Monitor announced its change, U.S. News and World Report announced that it would go monthly.  Several other newspapers announced that they would change their publications, and have since closed the print edition entirely.  Here is a map that track all the layoffs and buyouts in 2009 alone.  http://graphicdesignr.net/papercuts/ and here is a USA Today story from March 2009 about the industry.  http://www.usatoday.com/money/media/2009-03-17-newspapers-downturn_N.htm .  I just waymarked another newspaper HQ, the Boston Globe, which is also in a crisis.  So, though the Monitor was one of the first major publications to announce that it was changing or stopping publication of news, it is now ‘in the noise’ among others.

I’m sorry that the daily had to halt, but I understand the circumstances.

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