Friday 27 February 2009

'Goodbye, Colorado': This is what it feels like when a newspaper dies

The Rocky Mountain News in Denver, Colorado, which launched in 1859 produced its last edition today and this is how it covered its own death .
In a final message to readers the paper said: "To have reached this day, the final edition of the Rocky Mountain News, just 55 days shy of its 150th birthday is painful. We will scatter. And all that will be left are the stories we have told, captured on microfilm or in digital archives, devices unimaginable in those first days.
"But what was present in the paper then and has remained to this day is a belief in this community and the people who make it what it has become and what it will be. We part in sorrow because we know so much lies ahead that will be worth telling, and we will not be there to do so."
Reporting on its own demise, the paper says: "The Denver metro area simply could not support two major newspapers in the midst of the current economic recession. That came on top of tectonic shifts sweeping the news business, including, most recently, the phenomenon that has seen the Internet siphon off once-lucrative pieces of the business, such as classified advertising."
The Rocky Mountain News was Colorado's first newspaper and oldest continually operated business. It has won four Pulitzer prizes since 2000.
The last front page can be seen here. There is also a video of the chief executive breaking the closure news to staff.
Chilling stuff in the current economic climate facing the press in the UK.

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