Tuesday, July 17

the battle, for now

The battle for the trademark "Fort Collins NOW" is the primary piece of industry news in this morning's email newsletter from the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies. One piece they didn't link is Weekly Publisher Joel Dyer's editorial in last week's edition (released a couple days prior to the Trib's announcement of the name change) in which he claims that readers have expressed "concern" over the sale and that "the only thing that has changed is that we will now be able to expand our newsgathering capabilities and reporting in ways that we only dreamed of when we started."

Except, of course, the name. To start. I expect at least one other change is going to include a move back to outdoor bins and indoor racks as a means of distribution. Can they possibly afford to direct-mail two editions (one Friday and one Saturday, which is supposedly good for circulars but what about readers?) each week? Taking them out of mailboxes is certainly going to impact their numbers, and if Windsor NOW holds any clues, we could see this paper going exclusively into gas stations.

AAN was consistently updating its post yesterday, changing language along the way. The phrase I liked best ("trademark jujitsu") is now gone, but I think I may start using it over at fortcollinsnow.blogspot.com.

We spoke with other media outlets yesterday and will post links to those stories as they are published.

Still no word from the Trib or the Weekly (not sure what we're supposed to call it these days, so I'll stick with that), but Greeley Publishing, yet another subsidiary of the Nevada-based Swift Communications (which also holds the Trib), has also registered the name "Fort Collins NOW" with the Secretary of State. The fine print allows two companies to hold the moniker, but the original Fort Collins NOW has begun publishing a blog, so stay tuned for updates on how that plays out. The other NOW is rumored to begin publication in two weeks. ...

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