More on the Columbus Dispatch’s new format

Nieman Labs posted a nice in-depth look at the new Columbus Dispatch: http://www.niemanlab.org/2013/02/the-newsonomics-of-pressing-innovation/

From the sound of things, readers are taking it well: “Reader response within the first week is running 2 to 1 in favor of the redesign. That’s a remarkable feat for any redesign.”

One of my previous questions was whether the idea of the compact format using three-around printing is too much of a print-centric strategy, and this article addresses that issue. The Dispatch is taking it one step at a time, selling readers on the new print version first, with plans to strengthen their digital presence with a new iOS app next.

I think it’s pretty great that the Dispatch was willing to make the investment and take the risk of moving to a new format. The current landscape has newspapers across the country trying all kinds of different strategies, but I think some of the most interesting to follow are the ones that take a positive outlook towards print in ways that involve significant investments rather than clinging desperately to traditions.

Nicole Vas

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