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October 23 2010

12:34

THE NEX “I” NEWSPAPER IN BARCELONA

ARA is the name for the new Catalan multi-platform newspaper to be launch in Barcelona on Monday November 25.

Small format and short pagination (40-48)  during weekdays and trying to produce a big weekend edition.

The founders will present the new paper formula next Tuesday October 26 but many details, including its own Manifesto, have been released here.

Like the new British “i” newspaper, ARA wants to reach a new generation of Catalan newspaper readers and non readers with a slick, crispy, trendy and compelling print brand with many electronic news extensions.

The goal is really modest and realistic (11,000 copies in the first year) but the founders expect more than that.

Keep in mind that the almost 8-million Catalonia market is smaller but richer than the 10-million Portuguese one where “i” sells more than this figure.

They are investing less than 9-million euro and they the business plan expects to break-even in four years.

The less than 100-journalist newsroom will have very young reporters and the top editors are also a new generation of journalists, lead by Carles Capdevila as editor in chief, Joan Alegre as publisher and Oriol Soler as president of ARA.

INNOVATION was approached by the founders of ARA interested in many of our most recent projects, including the Portuguese “i”, which multimedia newsroom visited in Lisbon, but we have not been involved in any way.

They told us that the ARA project will share many of our ideas (“compact and compelling newspapers”, “caviar journalism”, “daily-news-magazines”, “”30/30 newspapers”. “why and what’s next newspapers”, “show don’t tell journalism”) and the same with the integrated multimedia newsroom concepts that INNOVATION working with our Calau&Riera media architect partners have developed in many countries like the most recent one for India Today in New Delhi.

With more than 19,000 fans on Facebook and more than 3,000 followers on Twitter ARA is promoting the new paper with several viral marketing tools including pre-launch presentations across Catalonia.

Is this new paper going to be a real competitor of La Vanguardia, El Periodico de Catalunya, Punt Diari or Avui?

I don’t think so, but they better pay attention to all these grassroots tactics.

Newspapers are as strong as their connections with readers, audiences and communities are.

And ARA is doing this very well.

If the product delivers this kind of new post-news quality journalism and avoids the temptation to become another political partisan newspaper, ARA could find space and become a viable model.

So, again, like with the new “i” project in the UK, welcome to ARA and to any new paper willing to innovate and offer quality journalism, in English or in Catalan, because around the world there is only one journalism language: the good one.

November 25 2009

08:22

Editors Weblog: Catalan journalist launches paid-for, online-only news site

Editors Weblog translates a report from El Mundo on Catalan journalist Arcadi Espada, who is to launch a paid-for news site, Factual, on November 30.

The site will charge €50 a year for access to unlimited content and has a starting budget of €250,000.

According to the report, Espada has been a staunch supporter of the growth in online-only news websites in favour of print publications. The launch of Factual, however, follows the closure of award-winning Spanish news site Soitu.es last month.

Full story at this link…

Introductory video from Factual – in Spanish – below:

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