US Newspaper Publisher Reverses Time

23 January 2009

SAN FRANCISCO: H G Wells invented the time machine in 1895 – in literary form at least – and the feat is about to be repeated next week in San Francisco and Chicago, not as an SF novella, but as a newspaper. 

In the twenty-first century world of the internet, the web-log, or 'blog' as it is more familiarly known, is ubiquitous, epitomizing not only the era but also the ethos of the web. 

Meantime, according to the pundits, in another space/time continuum newspapersare a dying species whose life expectancy is prolonged only by their forays onto the internet.

But this trend is about to be reversed – thanks to the entrepreneurial instincts of one Joshua Karp, founder and publisher of The Printed Blog, a daily, free, hard copy newspaper which according to Karp will be "comprised entirely of blogs and other user-generated content".

The first issue of this enterprising freesheet will hit the streets of Chicago and San Francisco on Tuesday. It will start as a weekly, but Karp hopes eventually to publish free neighborhood editions of The Printed Blog twice-daily in many cities around the US.

It could catch on, believes David Cohen, a founder of Silicon Valley Community Newspapers. "The free newspaper business model is still very workable.

"There's a huge readership that wants the local news, and local businesses tend to increase their advertising in bad times because they have to capture people's attention."

Data sourced from New York Times; additional content by WARC staff