Athens Plus: The end

Dear friends,

I am sad to inform you that we put the last issue of our weekly newspaper, Athens Plus, to bed tonight. A decision was taken earlier this week by our publishers to stop printing the newspaper.

I will not go into the details of why this decision was taken but I would like to remind you that Athens Plus, which was first-published two-and-a-half years ago, has won three design awards and was voted the best-designed weekly newspaper in Europe in 2008 – the first Greek newspaper to win this award. Also, since the first issue on June 13, 2008, it was built a faithful and sizeable readership in print and online.

A tremendous amount of work from a dedicated team went into producing Athens Plus each week. Clearly, mistakes were made along the way but nobody could fault the effort, commitment and inspiration that this group of journalists, copy editors, proof readers, designers and page maker s put into each issue.

Ten members of this team are now jobless. Although we all accept that it is part of life for people to be hired and fired, it’s galling when the loss of a person’s job has nothing to do with the quality of his or her work. This only exacerbates the guilt and sadness felt by the eight of us who are left behind to work on Kathimerini English Edition and its website.

Our loss, and the company’s loss, is epitomised by the fact that all 10 of those who were fired came into work for two extra days without pay to help put out the last ever issue of Athens Plus. I think this alone tells you about their character and professionalism and how much they all believed in what we were doing.

Bidding farewell to them was a painful experience but there is something that we can all take from this experience. We were involved in creating something from nothing and we did it as a real team. You don’t get to say that too many times in life. If we can all carry this with us alongside the valuable lessons we’ve learned thanks to Athens Plus, we will be stronger and wiser.

For those who supported us over the past couple of years, we are very thankful. We will do our best to be the best again.

Nick Malkoutzis
Deputy Editor

10 responses to “Athens Plus: The end

  1. Along with many of my colleagues in the Athens News, I’m very sad to see the Athens Plus go. You and your colleagues worked extremely hard on the title, which we always viewed as healthy and welcome competition.

    • Thank you Damian for your kind words and the fair write-up in this week’s Athens News. I share your opinion on the issue of competition and know that a lot of people worked hard to save Athens News and are now working even harder to keep it going. We operate in such a small market in such a small country that in essence we are all colleagues, doing their best to provide a top quality service for our readers.

  2. hi Nick, sorry to hear this; I have enjoyed the Athens Plus, and I can say, especially your contributions. I hope you keep your blog going…

    hans

    • Thanks Hans. Your views are shared by a lot of people, which makes it all the more frustrating that the decision has been taken to shut it down. I will keep the blog going and actually hope to be blogging more often. I look forward to your feedback.

  3. I’m friends with a colleague of yours and knew just after the decision that we would be saying goodbye to Athens Plus but kept it to myself and grieved quietly, while online rumors spread.

    In my opinion, there was no competition between Athens Plus and Athens News, and I’m sad to see the last one standing is not the rightful victor. We live in uncertain times, but be certain that what you gave us was the best.

  4. Hi Nick, it came as a surprise to hear that Athens Plus was closing. Although we all know about he financial difficulties of taking forward a print newspaper I honestly did not expect this to happen so soon. It is a shame, it was great quality articles and design. Keep the goodness going online!

    • Thanks Adan. They are tough times for the print media, especially in Greece – just look at what happened at To Vima and Apogevmatini. Hopefully we will move forward with our online venture. I’ll keep you posted.

  5. Dear Nikos,
    I was disappointed to hear of the closure of Athens Plus, it was the best of Athens weekly newspapers and will be sorely missed by many.
    Your team effort, quality and variety of articles, lay-out and design were highly commendable and worthy of the awards taken.
    The frustration and disappointment you and your colleagues feel must be acute, from my own experience – to launch a publication, grow it, receive awards, only to have to bury it is a bitter a blow.
    Good luck for the future.
    Kindest regards
    Barbara

  6. I back Barbara’s comments 100% on Athens Plus! A serious loss to Athenian press.

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