Morry Schwartz, publisher of The Monthly and Quarterly Essay, is set to launch a new weekly newspaper called The Saturday Paper early this year, proving that print media is far from dead.
If anything, he and Erik Jensen, the Paper‘s Editor, argue that it’s the shift away from print media that has led to a decrease in the quality of journalism.
‘I believe in print,’ Schwartz says. ‘While some in the industry have convinced themselves of terminal decline, I believe an audience exists for a new player to come in and do journalism better than anyone else. I am launching this newspaper because I know it will work.’
‘It is a project of which I am extremely proud.’
Continuing on in the tradition of its sister publications, The Saturday Paper seeks to make up ‘for a lack of quality and diversity in Australian journalism’, and will focus on in-depth investigations, feature stories, analysis and arts and culture.
According to Editor Erik Jensen, the quality of journalism has suffered as a result of the ever-quickening pace of the online news cycle. Currently there is much more of a focus on quick, fast news, and less on digging deep into the facts.
‘The pace and pressure of news today is taking journalists away from the kind of journalism they should be doing, which is an analytical account of news,’ he told AdNews. ‘Deep, definitive journalism doesn’t seek to be first, but (seeks to be) the best.’
‘The Saturday Paper is a chance to remake print journalism for a new generation.’
‘Morry and I have spent 18 months breaking apart newspapers and putting them back together and I think we have found a model where print journalism can be vital and be sustainable. Our model will repair some of the damage that’s been done to print.’ (Mumbrella)
Jensen, a former Fairfax Media journalist and Walkley Young Print Journalist of the Year, left his job at Sydney Morning Herald to move to Melbourne and spearhead the project.
He may only be 25, but he certainly has Schwartz’s respect.
‘Erik is a gifted young editor,’ says Schwartz. ‘He has impressed me with his innate feel for news and his deep understanding of what makes a story. He is a natural provocateur and he will ensure we have a paper that is lively and important – that sees through the flaws in current newspapers and makes print vital again.’
The Saturday Paper to set to publish 48 issues a year, and will be available in Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra.
I for one can’t wait to see the paper launched. After so much uncertainty, here’s to what looks like a brighter-looking future for print journalism.
The Saturday Paper will be launching soon. Find out more here.