After pandemic layoffs, a local news company seeks subscribers on Substack.

Examiner Media, a publisher of no cost weekly newspapers in New York’s Decreased Hudson Valley, has started out a digital magazine, Examiner+, on the digital platform Substack.

Subscriptions to Examiner+, whose first problem appeared on Tuesday, will price $5.99 a thirty day period or $49.99 a year. In producing a subscription publication for Substack, Examiner Media is testing whether a company identified primarily for its advert-supported community newspapers — a sector of the media organization that has struggled considerably in the latest many years — can come across achievements by inquiring viewers to shell out for news articles on the net.

Examiner+ will incorporate posts not obtainable in Examiner Media’s papers, which incorporate The Northern Westchester Examiner and The Putnam Examiner. “It cannot just be a rehash of what we’re already serving up in print,” said Robert Schork, the company’s electronic editorial director.

He cited a coming feature on the April closing of the Indian Position nuclear electricity plant. Examiner+ also has a profile of the actor Chazz Palminteri, who just lately opened Chazz Palminteri Italian Cafe in White Plains.

Adam Stone started Examiner Media in 2007, the same yr Gannett, the significant newspaper chain, shuttered The Patent Trader, a 50-year-previous paper in northern Westchester County. Last 12 months, after pandemic-linked lockdowns froze marketing and in-man or woman gatherings, Mr. Stone reduce Examiner Media’s complete-time editorial personnel to two men and women from 6. He also solicited cash for the very first time and obtained far more than $30,000, predominantly in compact donations.

“It felt like there was opportunity in reader revenue that we weren’t tapping,” he said.

Credit rating…Donna Mueller

Enter Substack. The enterprise capital-backed start off-up is ideal recognized for persuading nationally well-liked writers to go away founded publications and go into business enterprise for them selves with subscription newsletters. This spring, it introduced Substack Local, a $1 million initiative to support area journalism with grants. In June, Examiner Media was selected as just one of 12 winners, a team that involved local news publishers in Australia, Britain, Nigeria, Romania and Taiwan.

“We would not look at ourselves a achievement if we just took famous people and made them well-known in a new context,” reported Hamish McKenzie, a Substack co-founder.

A further locally oriented information publication, The Charlotte Ledger, established two years back by the previous Charlotte Observer reporter Tony Mecia, has identified achievement on Substack, with 10,000 subscribers, all around 2,200 of whom are paying, he stated.

“You listen to a lot of doom and gloom on regional information,” Mr. Mecia said, “but that’s mostly newspapers. There are men and women hoping a large amount of fascinating issues, and some of it is very encouraging.”

Examiner Media will obtain $75,000 from Substack in 4 installments, as nicely as 15 percent of the initially-calendar year revenue for Examiner+, Mr. Stone stated. The cash assisted Mr. Stone establish the staff back to five complete-time editorial staff. Soon after a year, the company’s share of subscription income will go to 90 percent, the Substack conventional.

“If we can crack the code,” he said, “we can announce the blueprint to the wider entire world. All community newspapers could follow this design.”

Christopher Lewis

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