Poynter’s Kristen Hare checks in with the Inlander in Spokane, Wash., for some tips from a 25-year-old alt-weekly that started as a grad school project by brothers Ted and Jeremy McGregor:
There’s a huge cacophony of information right now, Ted said. But the Inlander has tried to stay true to telling stories and staying local.
“There’s been an explosion of journalism and information, particularly about the world and DC, but for Spokane, there really hasn’t been an explosion, it’s kind of a retraction,” Ted said. “There’s a lot of cool stories to tell here.”
A lot of local newsrooms, including alt-weeklies, are now owned by chains. But Ted said he never wanted to sell, and he never got a serious offer. The Inlander has been careful with staff size, he said, and has had solid staffing for the last five or six years, with a newsroom of 12.
He’s also cautious of expansion. People have suggested the Inlander launch publications in other places, Ted said. But if he bought a publication, say, in Boise, “I don’t know Boise. I don’t live there.”