Local newspapers closing left and right

Some print publications were only be offered on the web.

Jennifer Coxby Jennifer Cox

The alternative weekly XPress in Ottawa will no longer be a printed and is moving solely to the internet after almost 20 years of being in circulation – it's one of several newspapers going to the web.

"It's a hard time for print media," said Ben Welland, who has been a contributing photographer to XPress for a decade (as reported by the Ottawa Citizen). "I didn't see it coming at all. It looked great [the cover]. It's a great cover and it's unfortunately not going to come out on Thursday."

Three other newspapers are being downgraded to website-only mediums – Montreal's Hour Community in English, and the Saguenay/Alma and Mauricie editions of Voir, which are both in French.

Internet-based outlets in particular are making a splash in the nation's capital – for example, a local blog called Apartment 613 is a user generated site about arts, culture, and more. According to the Citizen, the purpose of Apartment 613 is to engage people to explore Ottawa's art scene and it works from a participatory model, said Katie Marsh, one of the founding contributors. For example, the blog recently launched a lecture series called Apartment 613 Talks. "We don't just write about stuff that's happening but we also try to make things happen," Marsh said. "We're not the kind of objective, stand-back observers. We're very much out there doing stuff, as well. It was born out of a desire for more – not less – arts coverage in Ottawa, so the loss of XPress is 'a shame.' It's a sad day for the Ottawa arts and culture scene. Not everybody has access to Internet or smartphones, which means paper weeklies still have a role in letting people know what's happening in the city."


Photo Credit:  Shutterstock/Maxx-Studio