Thursday, March 30, 2023
March 30, 2023

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From the Newsroom: Monday paper ends, and more

By , Columbian Editor

At the risk of repeating myself, I wanted to remind all of our readers that we are no longer publishing a Monday print edition of The Columbian.

I am sorry that we won’t be there on your porch this coming Monday, but, as I shared with you a couple of weeks ago, it seems like our least worst choice as we continue to weather the shrinking demand for printed newspapers.

It is also in keeping with our roots. For many years, we published six days a week, on weekday afternoons and Sunday mornings. As recently as the 1980s, afternoon newspapers still outnumbered morning editions; now there are only a handful left, and most of those are in small towns. Yes, times have changed, and they continue to change for U.S. newspapers.

As we react to trends in our industry, we have tried to keep nearly all of the features that you came to expect in that Monday edition.

n Monday comics, puzzles and Aces on Bridge will be printed on Tuesdays. We’ll add two pages to the Tuesday Life and Sports sections to accommodate this content. We are still trying to figure out what to do with those sports section pages, so you may see some experiments for a few weeks. I’ll let you know when we have decided on a permanent solution.

The Monday TV grid will appear on Sundays.

Roll Call Report, which lists how our delegation voted in Washington, D.C., the previous week, will appear on Saturdays when Congress is in session.

Working in Clark County will usually appear on Saturdays. We reserve the right to save it for another day if too much business news happens on any given Friday. The business calendar and People in Business will move to Sundays.

Our weekly Health cover moves to Tuesdays. We also plan to broaden the content to include science features, which currently struggle to find a home in our print edition. Frankly, I am excited about this change, because Tuesday is our Newspapers in Education day. Teachers will find this content to be more useful than our At Home section about decorating and gardening.

• Everybody Has a Story moves to Sunday Life, at least for now.

At Home moves to Saturdays beginning next week. Saturday mornings, before you hit the garden center or hardware store, seem like a good fit for these stories.

Saturday’s Community section content will be split among several days, with some of the content appearing in our Clark County section and the rest in Life. The contributed neighborhood news — what we like to call “truckies”— will appear on Fridays. This also starts next week.

Dropping Monday’s print edition was the biggest change to our business plan for the new year, but there are others that you may notice.

We have eliminated a press room shift on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday nights. That means we will need to print The Columbian about two hours earlier.

I don’t expect that to alter the content of the news sections very much, but it will affect the sports department. I would guess that the results of NBA and Major League Baseball games played on the West Coast won’t be available in time to make our print deadline. We’ll print the game summary online and in print the following day. If you’ve ever picked up a newspaper in Atlanta or Philadelphia and looked for the Portland Trail Blazers’ score, you know what I mean.

It’s important to note that our deadline isn’t changing the rest of the week. Come fall, you will still get our comprehensive high school football report in your Saturday print edition, and Pac-12 football in the Sunday paper.

I hope you won’t find these changes too disruptive. By making them now, we can position ourselves to continue to be Southwest Washington’s best source of local journalism for many years to come.