At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Harvard University’s Nieman Foundation for Journalism warned of a “total annihilation” of alt-weekly newspapers. The report tallied more than a dozen that had either ceased publication of a print edition, or folded altogether, in March 2020 alone.
Portland wasn’t spared. The Mercury announced that same month it would no longer publish a physical paper, although the newspaper still continues to regularly publish stories online.
Now, almost two years into the pandemic, Willamette Week is the only alt-weekly in Portland that publishes a print newspaper. The physical presence of the hard copies, available for free throughout the city, is a weekly notice that independent journalism is alive in Portland.
But don’t take our word for it. Here’s a note we received in December from bestselling author Cheryl Strayed: “Thanks for your good work. Portland needs you!”
See all 25 Reasons to Love Portland here!