EDITORIAL: One year later of weekly content

This+is+the+conveyor+belt+from+the+folding+unit+which+conveys+the+cut+and+folds+into+the+newspaper+that+comes+off+the+printing+press+line.+

Ashanti Thomas

This is the conveyor belt from the folding unit which conveys the cut and folds into the newspaper that comes off the printing press line.

Editorial Board

Last year, The Daily Eastern News ran its last daily print edition due to changes within the journalism department.

Several factors weighed in on the decision; Eastern’s reduced enrollment led to less fee money for Student Publications, a decline in enrollment of journalism students at Eastern has led to a smaller staff, the pressman retiring, students are more likely to read news media through social media and the internet to receive news, and the news media industry has changed to focus on digital media platforms.

The News had printed daily for nearly 50 years Monday through Friday. 

When the decision was made to change from printing daily to once a week, it was made with reluctance for such a unique feature of Eastern.

At the time of printing daily, The News was one of the last daily university newspapers to still print daily, and it was one of the few university newspapers printing from its own press room in the country.

However, times were changing. Although traditions are very important for many people and The News’ alumni, this was a needed change.

With that transition, there was definitely a learning curve. We switched up our day-to-day coverage to more of a topical spin, diving into certain themes or issues we as a staff wanted to highlight.

Not to sound overzealous, but we think we should give ourselves a pat on the back for the considerable positive response we have gotten from the community. After the first couple of months of weekly prints, we finally got into a rhythm.

As a staff, we brainstorm story ideas and plan coverage pertaining to the week’s topic and work throughout the week developing stories; our opinion section to relate to the paper’s topic, with an editorial addressing a problem at Eastern or one at larger that relates to our audience; our sports section with the latest updates on Eastern athletics; and our photographers telling stories through their photographs.

We still publish our regular daily coverage online, the only difference was our print publication becoming a weekly.

Even a year out, for most of us on staff, the au revior to that daily grind is bittersweet. Yes, we can all take a conjoined breath of relief thanks to fewer late-night deadlines and more room for creativity but as weird as it sounds, part of us actually miss it. The lack of time we could invest into a product didn’t allow us to do much creatively with page design.

As journalists, we are attached to a physical aspect to show off our work, which is difficult to have with online content. However, even more pride was experienced when our week-long work gets printed and distributed every Wednesday.

Those first few weeks were harder emotionally, but quickly the excitement of something new urged us on. Plus, the Eastern community’s positive feedback for the change reassured us this change was a good one.

The satisfaction of seeing the content you produced the night before on hundreds of papers isn’t there anymore, that turnaround is pushed out to once a week.

Yet for some of us, that satisfaction has grown tenfold because of the extra time and effort put into the special weekly editions.

While this change began with hesitancy and concerns, a year later of weekly editions The News proudly displays each cover on the newsroom walls which shows how much pride we have for our work. This change was necessary for The News to grow and begin its next chapter, and this is only the beginning.

 

The Editorial Board can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]