New independent newspaper to hit Sydney neighbourhoods

By Selim Unutmaz in Media News on

A new print newspaper will be delivered to 75,000 premises in Sydney’s inner East, West, and City following the launch of the Neighbourhood newspaper in May.

The newspaper’s aim is to deliver local news with global implications, according to publisher Jonathan Samway.

Whether it’s film, television, advertising or news, the digital revolution of the last decade has changed things – radically. The pipe has widened, and there is so much information, so many choices, so much distraction and splintering,” Samway said.

“Media adaptation has to be about creating a significant micro-niche audience who are engaged with what you’re doing. Good storytelling assures that active engagement and that potent, focused audience.”

Samway believes that “now is the time for quality, local print news to thrive alongside digital”, a wave that Neighbourhood aims to ride on.

Editor Mark Mordue reiterated the newspaper’s aim to gain local community trust by providing insightful perspectives on important global topics.

“Because people are being overwhelmed by the digital flood of information there’s an increasing demand for local content and publications that can be trusted. Trust, community and connection are the premium qualities people are seeking,” Mordue said.

“Being printed monthly, Neighbourhood’s content will focus on issues as much as news while its local perspective allows it to drill down into the heart of what is going on in its readers’ suburbs.”

Integrated PR agency Poem is working with the Newspaper for its launch, while expanding the sales and partnerships team. The newspaper will also include additional written content, video and podcasts over its website and social media platforms.

PR notes |

Asked how PR agencies can best interact with Neighbourhood, Mordue emphasised the presence of a sophisticated community of people looking to engage with news which addresses local findings with possible internationally-extending ripple-effects.

We’re a human publication. We’re about people, because we’re about community. We’ll be looking for that kind of engagement. That human element will certainly be an influencing factor.”

We’re looking to integrate into the inner city community that are our audience, who are sophisticated and globally interested. It could be something as simple as a local restaurant or it could be as sophisticated as national business or art news - this is very much about a state of mind. The whole premise is that we are acting locally but thinking globally. We’re looking for a particularly brand identity”

He highlighted that PR needed to make clear the role of each of its separate sections, which include  Issues, expression, features, culture, local, next door (a hypothetical next door neighbour situation) , postcard (local and international travel) and footpath (visual letters to the editor).

Neighbourhood will aim to be adaptable to the kind of niche stories that larger, more rigid publishers cannot deal with, and it will have a multi-media presence.

“We want to be receptive to fresh ideas or flavours that larger publishers might not be able to engage with easily. We can respond much more intimately to certain kinds of stories.I hope that in terms of content, we’ll be a little bit more open to creative ideas. We want to develop our own images from our perspective, as a kind of visual identity or signature.”

The people pitching should be thinking about the story as something in print with the possibility of a multi-media publishing platform.”

Neighbourhood is not interested in any lifestyle magazine-style pitches, instead seeking communication to a sophisticated audience.

“Strictly speaking, we’re not a lifestyle publication - we’re a newspaper. We’re concerned with quality content, and content that a pretty sophisticated media audience are going to want to be engaged with. We want to separate ourselves from lifestyle publications and the simplicity of them.”

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