The new newspaper, the new Newsagent

Gaw explores how, even though traditional newspapers are in decline, newsprint is finding new and quite lovely uses.

For nearly two years now I’ve been working at a start-up called Newspaper Club. We help people make their own newspapers. It’s been a fascinating experience not least because of what people, all sorts of people, are making.

I experienced one of my biggest thrills one evening earlier this year when we were celebrating the arrival of a shiny new digital press at one of our printing partners. Very thoughtfully, our printer friend had laid out on a big table all the papers they’d run off for Newspaper Club’s customers in the previous few weeks. I knew we were constantly being given some great stuff to print but I was really unprepared for how good they all looked. Many were quite beautiful. Others clever and witty. Even the ones that had a bit of an amateur look about them looked amateur in a genuine and charming way.

Well, I’ve just experienced another thrill like that one. We now have an online, and constantly replenished, version of that printer’s big table on the site: our Newsagent. People share their newspapers there by simply selecting an option when they’re ready. It’s only been up for a couple of weeks but there’s already a good selection.

To pick out a few from our recently featured papers (though I could have chosen literally dozens of interesting ones from those shared): this splendid wedding anniversary one by Phil Dobinson, which has surely earned him a wheelbarrow of marital brownie points (incidentally, they also made a similarly splendid wedding paper); this intriguing one by the Ferment ‘zine people, which happens to be about one of my favourite subjects, food (you can sign up to buy it here); this one, whose front page is shown above, by the photography collective wideyed, featuring a residency in a French chateau and lots of wine-making (wine being another favourite thing); and this one made by Ingi, who is, you know, one of those Icelandic-Belgian-Geordie comic creators (it will be for sale at the Canny Comic Con on 10th December). I could go on – but why not pop over to the Newsagent and take a look yourself?

The word “newspaper” really doesn’t do it all justice, does it?

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4 thoughts on “The new newspaper, the new Newsagent

  1. ianvince@mac.com'
    December 5, 2011 at 11:41

    Nice to see that Newspaper Club is going from strength to strength – I was thinking of doing a Department of Social Security one full of nasty little forms and the like, including their take on matters of the moment, but have, so far, been overtaken by ennui at the state of the world.

  2. Gaw
    December 5, 2011 at 13:41

    I hope some of the Newsagent examples dispel your ennui, Ian!

  3. Worm
    December 5, 2011 at 16:08

    some of these newspapers are pretty darn good! Its great seeing things made with genuine care and enthusiasm

  4. ianvince@mac.com'
    December 5, 2011 at 16:17

    They all look great, Gaw. Creative solutions which bring typography and design back to newspaper production and show off the medium well. My weariness is with the state of politics – you know, the content of all those other newspapers.

    Anyone thought of doing a Leveson Inquiry-inspired parody?

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