How Low Can You Go?

By Rob Last edited 161 months ago
How Low Can You Go?

If there's one thing the newspapers like to report on it's other newspapers, so the news that the Evening Standard might be 'dummy launching' its free ES Lite paper this week has brought the broadsheets out, knives at the ready.


"There is some pessimism among rank and file staff [at the Standard] that the new paper will damage the Evening Standard brand in the long run, and may even destroy it altogether." reports the Guardian this morning, and you can almost hear the gleeful rubbing together of hands.

The Guardian goes on to explain that the paper "is expected to be positioned downmarket of the Evening Standard, with one source saying it would be aimed at 'shoppers and secretaries'".

The Times meanwhile goes in for the kill right from the headline: "Associated plans to lower the Standard for Londoners", suggsting that we deserve better than this.

It's easy to make fun of the Standard going "downmarket", but it is one of the great contradictions of the city that we can elect a Mayor who was one of the most left-wing politicians of the last two decades, but our daily newspapers are produced by the Rothermere Empire whose track record has been questionable since 1934, when Rothermere's great-grandfather threw his weight behind Walter Mosley and told his readers that, under fascism, Germany and Italy were the best governed nations in Europe.

And it's downright worrying to think that this organisation, which is already flooding London with free newspapers (nearly 500,000 copies of The Metro are distributed in London every weekday morning), will soon be increasing that coverage.

Where is our alternative?

Last Updated 08 December 2004


I'm dying for someone to explain to me how giving away a free 'lite' copy of the Standard will somehow increase sales of the paid-for copy. Common sense would seem to imply that it won't -- although it may bring in additional advertising revenue to counteract the haemorrhaging readership.

PS: Your TypeKey validation doesn't seem to be working.

miles ellis

think you'll find metro doesnt flood london with 840,000 copies. if you look on the back of the paper, it's 496,000 in London, 1million UK wide


You're absolutely right Miles, we'll correct that now - but that's still half a million papers!

What really pisses me off though is the way they call themeslves "Britain's largest offline Internet site".

What does that mean exactly?