Veggie Blogging
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So it's goodbye...

Not to a champion of investigative journalism, nor to the idea that there's room for a hard hitting, controversial news magazine in the Norwegian media market. Rather, it's goodbye to a news magazine that simply didn't make enough of a difference. Shelved at the end of last week, Memo was launched in March this year with much ado about new and different angles and promises of daring journalism, but never came close to living up to all the things it promised to be. If it had, it would have been a much sadder goodbye.


As it was, Memo was too similar to its main competitor, left-leaning Ny Tid, and a far cry from the esteemed magazines it was compared to before its launch, such as The Economist. Its former editor, Kristine Moody, was indeed a fresh breath in the Norwegian media landscape, but when she left her position earlier this month, amid speculations that she was simply 'too different' for Memo's left-leaning publisher, Dagbladet, I couldn't see how bringing in a hack from Dagbladet would do anything to help distinguishing the title from Ny Tid. In a bigger economy, like the UK, there may be room for several news magazines from the same side of the political spectrum, but hardly in a country of about 4,5 million citizens – unless we were all diehard leftists and avid news magazine readers.

My initial reaction to the news was that the end of Memo was just another proof of the futility of that Keynsian idea that you can spend your way out of a recession, and how there's no way all the new supplements and magazines recently flooded onto the market, in order to persuade people of the virtue of print over internet, can possible survive. But, at the end of the day, Memo was simply an unfocused, over-hyped and too indistinct product to find a big enough audience in the small Norwegian market.


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