It’s not often I introduce a new word into the world of communications. Well, I’m going to now.
Have you noticed that many local newspapers are called the “Echo” in some form? There’s Exeter’s Express and Echo, and The South Wales Echo, and many more across Britain. I can’t ever recall a national called by a variation of it, though.
So “Echo” is probably the best single-word describer of a local newspaper. It’s a pity that most locals seem to be a dying breed, or soon will be. The costs of printing and distribution are overwhelming even the “river of gold” of small ads and classified advertising.
Where Craigslist led the way in America, so many British locals are being gradually replaced by online alternatives.
Now imagine a hybrid between a quality blog and an Echo — online, of course. What would you call it? An Eclog, naturally.
That’s not to be confused with an eclogue, which is a poetic pastoral dialogue. The Greek origin of the word means “selection” or “pick out”, which is rather apt, I think.
Here at Syntagma Towers we have spent the last three months creating a new business. It will shortly produce the world’s first Eclog: Devon & Cornwall Online. You will find it on a screen near you in June.
May I suggest you rummage through your loft and find all those forgotten objets d’art you might want to flog to the good people of the West Country of England.
Alternatively, if you are a solicitor, accountant or estate agent, you may like to advertise your services locally. If a tourist, letting agency or general holiday company, it will not harm your interests to book a presence on the English Riviera, bearing in mind that the site will be visible across the country and may well become the first port of call for people wanting to vacation in the area.
Other Eclogs in the pipeline include, Somerset (with Bristol) and Dorset (with Bournemouth). In fact, there’s no limit to the possibilities.
So here’s to the Eclog, a brand new feature in the news and views industry of British publishing.
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Saturday Ramble: Localism and local newspapers