Two Birthdays, One DudeTuesday, March 31st, 2009
One local dude, Kirk Ross, definitely abides.
March 23rd, he celebrated the 2nd anniversary of the Carrboro Citizen, a hyper-local newspaper he bootstrapped online and migrated, partially, off-line to real, physical print.
Strangely, it feels like only a moment ago I posted on the kick-off of this growing outlet (a reverse of the sad trend at the McClatchied N&O).
Kirk recently posted this rumination on the genesis of the ‘Citizen and why he pioneered the melding of online and print presentations.
Two years ago amid this maelstrom, The Carrboro Citizen published the first issue of the first volume.
Robert Dickson and I started this paper in part because we saw an opening in the market and in part because we thought Carrboro and surrounding environs should have a locally owned and focused paper. But mostly we started The Citizen because we believe in newspapers.
To be honest, when we started that was a pretty lonely place. Some of the better business minds in the area were quick to point out that we were daft since print is a dying part of the information industry. Our contention was then, and is now, that print may be shrinking, but it is hardly dying. Having the opportunity to start from scratch, post Internet, provided us with the chance to incorporate a lot of hard-learned lessons.
So yes, weâ€™ve got blogs and Twitter and Facebook and Flickr and, according to the N.C. Press Association, operate the third-best website in the state for papers our size.
But all that and the print product too would be worthless without the one thing that gives purpose to our endeavor: journalism. It is quality work, solid reporting and good storytelling that empties the racks each week. Technological advances can enhance that, but not replace it.
The other anniversary? Kirk nailed the big 50!
Congratulations Kirk on both your public service and your ability to abide a Lud-icrous rock-n-roll life!