Independent media needs you. Join the Tyee.

The Hook: Political news, freshly caught

Rural reporters can't make a living, says former Nelson Post editor

The managing editor of the Nelson Post has quit his job, and journalism altogether.

In his farewell column, Chris Shepherd writes that there is no way to make a living as a reporter outside of a major urban centre.

"I think journalism is in trouble," his column opens. "So much trouble that I'm leaving, rather than go down with what I see as a sinking ship. . . I hope that doesn't come across as bitter, but the fact is I've stopped being a journalist because there’s no money in it."

Shepherd says the solution is greater involvement from community members, and points to the website (for which he is still managing editor) as a way for "everyone to become their own reporter."

"The answer is to use the internet, use Inthekoots, to tell your own stories," Shepherd writes.

As blogger BCReporter points out, the news industry in Nelson has taken a beating in recent years. The Nelson Express published its final paper last February after being driven out, according to publisher Nelson Becker, by "the aggressive competitiveness" of the Black Press-owned Nelson Star's ad rates.

Black Press bought the Nelson Daily News in 2010 while it was operating as a loss. The publisher shut down the paper soon after.

"Perhaps Nelson simply isn't big enough to sustain more than one news organization," writes BCReporter. "I'd like to think otherwise, but until something structural happens with the online news industry as a whole, I think that's probably the case."

Colleen Kimmett reports for The Tyee.

Find more in:

What have we missed? What do you think? We want to know. Comment below. Keep in mind:


  • Verify facts, debunk rumours
  • Add context and background
  • Spot typos and logical fallacies
  • Highlight reporting blind spots
  • Ignore trolls
  • Treat all with respect and curiosity
  • Connect with each other

Do not:

  • Use sexist, classist, racist or homophobic language
  • Libel or defame
  • Bully or troll
  • Troll patrol. Instead, flag suspect activity.
comments powered by Disqus