Chamber of Commerce board member Brendan Allen has his say on what comes next for print journalism in Gympie.
Chamber of Commerce board member Brendan Allen has his say on what comes next for print journalism in Gympie.

OPINION: The future of print media in Gympie

WRITTEN BY BRENDAN ALLEN - Gympie Chamber of Commerce

VERY few will know the ins and outs of the decision behind the massive changes to our local “rag” but the effects will ripple through our community for a long time to come.

I am lucky to have worked with many of the supremely talented team at the GT over the years.

What an astoundingly capable bunch they are.

The shining light of hope of course is the “paper” will continue on in digital form.

We will still have a group of amazing journalists that will continue to keep us updated on local issues.

Shelley, Frankie, Scott, Maddie and Josh, Gympie is lucky to have you.

There is also talk of a partnership with the Courier Mail so that is promising.

I encourage you to subscribe to the digital version of the GT; help support the jobs that are left.

Your subscriptions, comments and pageviews are keeping our friends employed.

So where to from here?

Funnily enough, I am not even sure I can talk about it here but let’s have a go.

I have always wondered if somebody reads my stuff before it makes it into the paper.

Does the closing of the print edition present a business opportunity?

Is there space for another print publication to rise in the space left?

Is there a way to give the people made redundant a new place to shine?

I am no expert on print media (I have a few ideas around digital but that is another article), but to me, there seems to be a vacuum that will be filled by something.

There seems to be a demand in the market and the GT was profitable so, hmm.

I have no doubt that someone already involved in the print media space would have started calculating the figures as soon as the announcement was made.

It will be interesting to see if anything shakes out of it in the not-so-distant future.

The media space has been scrambling for years to find direction.

Print media publications have changed hands so many times recently that it is hard to keep track.

Just last week it was announced that Bauer Media (Women’s Weekly, Woman’s Day to name a few) has been sold to a private equity group called Mercury Capital.

The sale included Pacific Magazines that Bauer recently acquired from Seven West for $40 million bucks.

To me that seems like buying shares in Blockbuster Video, but maybe somebody knows something better than I do.

Maybe the big-wigs at News Corp were right, and print media is finished, although it seems the team at Mercury Capital think otherwise.

Either way, we live in exciting times of what’s to come.

Shelley, if you have read this, thank you so very much for allowing this rank amateur to push the barrow of the Gympie Chamber of Commerce.

Without you and your team the Chamber would not be as strong as it is.

Post COVID, there is a big cuddle waiting for you.