Our internal affairs blog. Get up to speed on what we have planned next.
As you can probably tell from our excited tweets and the issue itself, we’ve just gone through part of our redesign at The Link. We’ve given the paper a new sleek feel; we have a new logo [which we’ll be rolling out on the rest of our web content soon], section heads and pagination.
The new section heads give us a larger space to play around with our layout. Not having to worry about a big rectangle at the beginning of each section gives us more freedom for design.The old section heads often enough forced us into working with the same style. We can now pull our images to the top of the page, or we can use negative space more freely. From now on, we can make unique pages without disrupting the content or overall design.
The new paginations are still similar to our old ones, they’ve been simply rearranged to fit our new style—moved from the edge of the page to the middle.
Our logo, the symbol of our name, has been around for 5 years. Our new logo is how we hope to see The Link within the next 5 years: A newspaper that has the feel of a magazine. The font we used for the slogan is the same we use in our body text; it represents what we are and what we will always be, a newspaper. But with a website we can update daily, we’re aiming to have longer, feature-style content in print each week.
A newspaper with a magazine feel has been a concept we’ve been wrestling with ever since the online shift at the end of Volume 31. We’re going to tweak a few more things in our next issue (not major changes; small functionality changes like the visual styles we use in our written content).
We may have a new look, but we’re working under the same mandate: as an independent advocacy journal to serve Concordia and the greater Montreal community. Make sure you grab our first issue of Volume 33, and stay tuned for Issue 2 (and the resumption of weekly print issues) on stands August 28!
Sometimes, the name of a publication is relevant.
Words like “Post” and “Gazette” and so on don’t mean much to us anymore, but, like The Link, which was so named because it was created from a merger of papers from each of Concordia’s two campuses, the Montreal Mirror was just that—a mirror for us to see ourselves in, a reflection of the city.
However muddied and dirty it could sometimes be, it was a way to see the city, to take the pulse of the people living around you.
One of the first thoughts I had upon hearing the news of the death of the Montreal Mirror, effective last week, was—as I tweeted it—“who will tell us what’s best in Montreal next year, you guys.”
The Mirror’s annual Best of Montreal poll was great for that, as was the Rant Line. We got to see angels and insects, movies, bands, and ads for all manner of sex workers. Whatever it was, it felt real. And now it’s gone.
What do we have left? We have the one remaining French-language alt weekly, Voir , obviously, and I imagine Montreal’s bilingual anglos will (and should) start picking that up when their Thursdays feel a little undercooked.
We’ve got Craigslist, which is sort of like the Mirror without any actual articles.
Montreal’s universities have got a bunch of great student papers. Their mandates are to focus primarily on campus-centric affairs, but in the absence of the Mirror, it’s hard not to imagine they’ll be covering the other stuff that the Mirror would have in yesteryear.
And hey, who knows—maybe The Gazette will even start to pick up some more alternative stuff.
It’s possible—it wouldn’t surprise me—that a new publication, online more likely than in print, will crop up in the next year or two to take the Mirror’s place a little bit.
Theoretically, there should remain some advertising revenue; Montreal’s anglo community may be a small percentage of the city as a whole, but it still numbers close to half a million. If Halifax can support an alt-weekly…
There aren’t many numbers to crunch, unfortunately; the hole the Mirror left behind is still a little mysterious. After flipping the kill-switch with a press release, publisher Quebecor replaced the paper’s website with an Editor’s statement that none of the Mirror’s higher-ups had written.
It’s a move that feels calculated to cut down on backlash; a one-last-issue from the team behind the Mirror, whose job often involved cutting sacred cows down to size, doubtless would have involved some degree of snark, whether open or not.
In any case, the city is poorer this week with no free anglo alt-weekly on the stands. I know we here at The Link will try our best to make up for its absence in ways that we can, but I know that it’ll be a loss we’ll all feel in different ways.
Not having a Mirror doesn’t mean you’re not there anymore, but damn if it wasn’t a good indicator of what concerts you wanted to go to, what movies you ought to check out, and what all the other crazies were ranting and raving about. We’ll miss you, Mirror.
A big thank you to all who voted for us in The Montreal Mirror ’s annual Best of Montreal reader poll. We ranked #5 in the top ten, after The Gazette, La Presse, Le Devoir and The Mirror itself. Are we proud to be the highest-ranked free newspaper besides the one that runs the contest? Damn right we are.
So thanks to all the lovers (and haters) that made this volume the non-stop rollercoaster that it was, and for all the writers, photographers, designers and editors that made it possible. We’re going to push ourselves to make the next volume even stronger. We’ll (hopefully) see you at the top this time next year.
— The Link
And a big shout-out to The McGill Daily for coming in at #9!
A few hundred mediaphiles joined up in the belly of Concordia’s Hall Building on the evening of April 19 in the D.B. Clark Theatre to talk about the past, present, and most importantly, the future of journalism.
The panel discussion marked the opening night of Journalism Strategies, a three-day conference on the state of media in Canada, and the state of media democracy with the hopes of re-imagining the future of Canadian journalism.
The discussion was moderated by CBC Daybreak host Mike Finnerty, and featured Tony Burman of Al Jazeera English, former Radio-Canada journalist Dominique Payette, Kai Nagata of The Tyee and founding publisher of rabble.ca Judy Rebick.
Though the discussion was long and touched on many points, we’ve chosen just a couple minutes of discussion that hit close to home.
Herein both Rebick and Nagata discuss the current student strike in Quebec, and how Canadian Anglophone media has handled the issue.
We’ve elected masthead for volume 33, so be ready for another year of student politics, city news, arts content and sports coverage. If you’re interested in joining our team for the 2012-2013 school year, give us a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org.