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From the editor’s desk: NOT the Gulf News

René J. Roy is the editor of the Wreckhouse Weekly.

I have a few jobs here at the Wreckhouse Weekly. I am the editor, sales director, print manager, procurement officer, distribution agent and the fix-it-upper.

Mondays tend to be my busiest days, when I prep and deliver the print edition to stores around the region, from Millville to Isle aux Morts. As you might expect, I get to meet and chat with a lot of different people. I am a very social guy, so schmoozing suits me fine.

I am also more than happy to talk about the newspaper, and listen to opinions, ideas, compliments and complaints. I’ll take it all, because without feedback, we will never grow. We won’t expand our paper, we wont have columnists or contributors, and most importantly, active and engaged readers.

But there is one idea that I can’t seem to get people to shake – that the Wreckhouse Weekly is somehow the new Gulf News.

I understand that for most of the Southwest Coast, the only newspaper they have known for the better part of five decades was the Gulf News. But let me be clear. We are NOT the Gulf News.

Old habits can die hard, and old sayings may never die, but I am here to tell you, the Gulf News is dead. SaltWire began combining or closing some of its smaller newspapers in the province even before COVID-19 started, citing low interest and reduced sales revenue.

We here at Wreckhouse Weekly saw the writing on the wall way before that. My sister, Rosalyn, was their reporter for two years before leaving. Without a local reporter, their coverage instead focused on mostly provincial news, or federal reports, things that held no real bearing for us locally. Sure, sometimes they’d try to get a local point of view, but overall the issue was primarily presented as originating from outside this region, instead of from within.

That’s not what is needed here though, at least not in our opinion, and even before the Gulf News closed up shop we had already identified a huge void when it came to local news coverage. That’s not to say there was no public appetite for it either. Five seconds on any of the local Facebook pages proves otherwise, to say nothing of the rumour mill.

So on our own, with no connection to any other media organization, we started our own newspaper. From scratch. In our home. Alone.

Our mission, our goal, was clear from the outset. This region has plenty of important stories to share about people who deserve recognition beyond a local tie-in quote for someone else’s story.

We rely exclusively on quality, relevant, and timely local content to entice readers and advertisers, which is not what the Gulf News was doing well before it closed up shop.

So I confess, when someone mentions us as the Gulf News, or associates us with them, it can ruffle my feathers a wee bit. Being the social guy that I am, I usually make sure to let people know that no, we most certainly are not the Gulf News.

You can call us the Wreckhouse, or The Weekly, or The Wreckhouse Weekly or even the local paper because that’s exactly what we are. Okay we offer a variety of print services too, but you know what I mean.

We want to do better, be better and serve you better than they ever did. In a hundred years, we want people to read about you and run to the print edition to verify who you are, what you did, and why it mattered.

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