Worst newspaper in Australia being sent up country as punishment. What has Rural Press got against country folk?
What do you do when you publish a newspaper that’s so bad, even your average gluten-free, soy-latte sipping, Fitzroy-dwelling, hairy-legged, sandal wearing, fringe-festival frequenter has stopped buying it?
Ship it off to the country. That’s what.
The Sunday Age is now acknowledged by newspaper afficionados and everyday readers alike as the worst newspaper in the country. Not only is its readership plummetting (down 12,000 readers in the most recent Morgan survey), but even to the untrained eye, it seems an utterly banal waste of paper. By the time most households even notice the Sunday Age, it is generally sporting a fine layer of bird seed and cocky sh*t, and yet, even partially obscured in this way, one can still discern the tragic pointlessness of this once entertaining broadsheet.
What, therefore, are the Rural Press Gang doing about it? If we were them, we’d shut down the Sunday Age and write it off as a life lesson in what inner-suburban nuff-nuffs can do when given free rein. But the good ‘ol boys have had another idea. They figure that their family of regional daily newspapers – the Bendigo Advertiser, Ballarat Courier, Latrobe Valley Express, Albury Border Mail, Sunraysia Daily and Warrnambool Standard – are in need of some Sabbath support. Each of those local newspapers publishes six days a week, but rests on the seventh. Those godless warriors at Rural Press think that no-one should rest just because it’s the weekend, and so, they thought, let’s make the Sunday Age work a little bit harder by delivering it to our country subscribers each week as part of their local paper subscription arrangements.
That’s right. If you’re a subscriber to one of those Rural Press titles, you’ll now get the Sunday Age tossed over your fence every week for free. Aty least the price is right, if nothing else.
Fairfax/Rural Press might think this is an efficient way to achieve “sales” of their sagging Sunday product, but we say it’s more likely to tarnish the reputation of each of the regional dailies that associate themselves with this stupid idea. Newsagents are already up in arms about the extra accounting involved, but the bigger question is this: how desperate are Fairfax that they would seek to foist the Sunday Age on decent, upstanding, God-fearing country folk without asking them first?
Our prediction? This will last about 6 Sundays, by which time our country cousins will be raising their voices and shouting aloud as one – no more!