Search This Blog

Saturday, October 8, 2016

OSU students' daily newspaper goes weekly for print edition and is inserted in local professional newspaper

Oregon State University's student newspaper "The Daily Barometer" is now being printed weekly only during the main school year, but it is now also being inserted in the local professional newspaper every week. (See About page "Barometer," accessed Sep. 6, 2016 that said, "Attention: The Barometer is no longer printed in the Summer and will only be published on Mondays starting Fall Term 2016. Please check out our online presence for daily news and updates." Also see the editorial by Riley Youngman Editor-in-Chief, "A new year, a new Baro," Barometer, Mon. Sep. 26, 2016, p. 2 and an announcement by the local profession newspaper the Gazete-Times: Mid-Valley Media, "A new partnership," posted Sep. 29, 2016. This change in publication of the print edition was hinted at in editorials at the end of by last by student editors who wanted readers to know they would be returning after summer break 2016, which was the first summer for decades that a weekly printed edition was not printed during the Summer Term.

This change of the OSU student newspaper, from daily to weekly print editions, prompted me to write the following letter to the editor of my local professional newspaper:

Those of us with nostalgia for old-fashioned newspapers printed with ink on newsprint were sad to read that the Oregon State University's daily student newspaper is now printed only every Monday during the fall to spring terms, but are happy to have the new printed version, called "The Baro," inserted into the Gazette-Times every Tuesday, albeit with a 4.5-inch shorter page height.

Forty years ago my mother, who refused to touch any computer, warned me that I might get what I wished for when I started evangelizing for the paperless publication computer technology that was being invented by people in both Silicon Valley and Corvallis.

Approximately two decades ago both the G-T and the OSU Barometer were some of the first publications on the World Wide Web, which leads to the question: When will the G-T start following the weekly print schedule adopted by OSU students?

(Quoted from Thomas Kraemer,"Letter: Happy to see 'The Baro' in the G-T," Gazette-Times, Tue. Oct. 11, 2016, p. A7, posted Oct. 8, 2016)

The editor of my local newspaper, Mike McInally, told me in a personal communication that he had, "No plans yet to go weekly, but it would be interesting to try to figure out a way to do that correctly." He said the Portland Oregonian newspaper has tried, with mixed results, to alter its print schedule and it also shrunk the newspaper to an 11" wide by 15" tall tabloid-like page size.

It seems to me that the value of a large newspaper page is the ability to skim read more news curated by human editors, and shrinking page sizes just reduces the benefits, at least until artificial intelligence can truly replace these human editors in the future.

For reference, here are the old and new page sizes:

  • OSU Barometer old page size 11" x 17-1/2"
  • OSU Baro new page size 11" x 13"
  • Cazette-Times page size 11" x 23" (Note it had a wider page until a few years ago when most newspapers standardized on their curent paper width, which caused the wider paper to become too expensive to buy)
  • Oregonian page size 11" x 15" in 2016

Also of interest is an "opinion piece" run in the OSU student newspaper by Ed Ray, Oregon State University President, "Welcome back students, from President Ray," Barometer, Mon. Sep. 26, 2016, p. 3. The Oregon State University President mentions the upcoming 150th anniversary of the founding of OSU in 1868 as a land grant college. President Ray also summarizes the latest enrollment figures, including the fact that 59% of the 7,650 incoming OSU students are instate students (4,510 new instate students) who have come from all of the counties in Oregon. Ray doesn't mention the overall enrollment numbers, which this year promises to be more than 40,000 students.

Some other links to news of interest:

Finally, for my own reference, I've listed below some links to the key OSU Calendars: