This week marks the six-year anniversary of the debut of The Orange County Tribune, the news operation serving the communities of Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Stanton and Westminster.
Changing reading habits, business pressures and the effects of the coronavirus pandemic have hammered the business of journalism and created in many areas what’s called a “news desert.”
There are very few true news organizations dedicated to covering our cities, and that means less oversight of government and less recognition of the accomplishments of the good and interesting people of our communities.
So, it was into this “news desert” that – in August 2016 we opened our lemonade – pardon, orange-ade – stand to provide something refreshing to people who want to know what’s going on in their cities, and those nearby.
The Tribune is the spiritual descendent of the Garden Grove Journal, published from September 1983 to March 2016. We operated the GGJ until we sold it to The Orange County Register in 2013.
The less said the better about what followed, except “they” closed the Journal in March and we launched The Tribune in August.
We started as an online-only operation with no advertising and no income other than a sense of satisfaction. But as our readership grew we started to attract advertising, not only from local businesses but also from national marketing enterprises.
Some of our more traditional readers of the old Journal just couldn’t get used to reading the web-based posts on a computer screen, so in December we launched an “e-paper” edition, which is basically a electronic replica of a more familiar newspaper format, with pages to turn and “papers” to download.
We liked that so much that in June we added another day of “printing,” so we now have e-papers on Wednesday and Saturday (with some exceptions).
There’s so much going on of interest to our readers that we now are members of The Associated Press, allowing us to provide additional coverage on a wide variety of topics.
How is all that working out? So far in 2022, we’ve had 544,114 views (as of Tuesday morning) and 416,988 visitors). We are on a pace to top 1 million views this year and close to 800,000 visitors.
We feel that there’s more room to grow and more growth to bring sustenance to this “news desert.” So, thank you for reading and supporting our modest – but rising – enterprise of non-partisan coverage of news, arts, opinion and sports for this West Orange County area.
To our readers: If you’d like a free subscription to the e-paper version of The Tribune, send us an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get it started.