Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Pink Triangle Press closes down all print editions of Xtra; to go all-digital in February

Pink Triangle Press, the leading gay and lesbian publisher in Canada, is discontinuing all print editions of Xtra newspapers in Toronto, Vancouver and Ottawa. The company is repositioning into an all-digital publisher.

The final issues of Xtra Vancouver and Xtra Ottawa will appear on streets February 12, 2015. The Toronto edition of Xtra will close on the newspaper's 31st anniversary; final issue on streets on February 19, 2015. In a release, Pink Triangle explained
PTP will focus on developing its journalism website and gay adult dating website The all-digital direction is a result of an eight-month strategic assessment process senior management at PTP began in spring 2014. 
"We have concluded that a complete transition to digital media offers the best opportunity to continue to engage our audiences over the long term. The move to all-digital journalism will bring with it significant benefits — a wider audience for PTP's message, greater currency, more effective advocacy, and, global news combined with local action," says Ken Popert, executive director and president of PTP. 
"We have a good track record of online engagement through Daily Xtra and other channels like YouTube. Most of our revenues already come through digital membership sales in the adult dating space, where we've had great success building a growing online community. We are looking to hone our journalism focus and develop a number of our unique strengths," says David Walberg, CEO of digital media at PTP.
With the discontinuation of the printed papers will go the jobs of 12 full-time employees; as a digital publisher, PTP will employ 57 in Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver. 

Pink Triangle began in 1971 when it launched The Body Politic, Canada's gay newspaper of record. Xtra Toronto was launched in 1984 and The Body Politic was closed down in 1987 so the company could concentrate on Xtra; Vancouver and Ottawa editions were launched in 1993. In 2010, Pink Triangle closed down a printed gay travel guide and moved it strictly online. In 2013 it closed its Fab magazine after 20 years of publication. 

In its release about going all-digital, the company said it had grown from a small, grassroots organization to "one of the most diversified gay multi-media enterprises in the world, with a roster of brands ranging from print to online publishing and television production."
“Although the scale of the Press has grown hugely since 1971, we remain true to our founding principles. We have no owners or shareholders profiting from our work and our overriding message remains that collective action is the way to advance the common good,” says Popert.

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