Evening Times They Are A Changing

Back in January I posted a blog about the digital future of the Glasgow Evening Times.

It told about plans to get the paper back into the heartlands with enhanced community news cover through a series of online portals.

And it seems like today is the day.

Our chums over at allmediascotland.com website carries this report on the move.

As predicted, it is rolling out a number of community sites under the highly capable assistant editor Graeme Smith, a former colleague of mine from our Daily Record days.

But what must be seen as a bold move is the sheer volume that are being introduced – 80 – with the first dozen going live today.

In many ways it is going right back to the weekly newspaper model of paying modest fees to local stringers to generate local content.

Which is clearly why the likes of SU&N have also stepped up the pace as was blogged here only last month.

SU&N’s very own Online Editor John Hutcheson’s comment was revealing when he stated: “You’re absolutely right when you mention the emphasis on community news – over the coming weeks and months, it will form a key part of our websites.
“We will be continually looking at ways to get readers and users involved. Rather than talking to them, we aim to have conversations with them.”

The Evening Times had to brace itself when the Daily Record launched its free evening PM title, as did the Edinburgh Evening News, Aberdeen Evening Express and Evening Telegraph in Dundee.

There was some accusations of “bullying” directed towards my former employer by the evenings at the time.

So could the Evening Times be accused of the same thing?

Perhaps.

But in truth, it is maybe only getting back to grass roots and doing what an evening paper should do – engage with all its readers.

As Graeme Smith told AMS: “I think it will only be a matter of time before we get a splash from a tip-off that’s come through one of our sites.”

It’s a bold experiment, one well worth the watching. Not least as other news groups wrestle with just how to address the digital revolution going on all around them.



Categories: Launches

2 replies

  1. Good move by the Times. However, I’ve been looking at a few of the local sites and there ain’t much going on so far.
    Judging by the antiquated look of the ET, GH and SH websites, and the lack of investment in editorial across the board, I would be amazed if Newsquest stump up enough cash to get bodies on board in order to make the mini-sites look busy enough to entice more traffic etc.

  2. Good luck to the Eve Times in attempting this but I feel for Helen Smith having to watch and moderate all those sites – which will only grow – as well as doing newsdesk duties.
    Also strange they have someone who doesn’t have an online presence in charge of their sites, but good luck to them. And, having worked with Helen in the past, good luck to her.

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