Website live, three-times-a-week print edition due to start Feb. 18
By Bert Etling, Ashland.news
Mailboxes throughout Jackson County will be filled this week with a 12-page broadsheet newspaper introducing the Rogue Valley Tribune to prospective readers. EO Media Group is getting the word out about its Medford-based news site and three-times a week printed paper with a saturation mailing to 93,000 area addresses.
The website — rvtrib.com — went live earlier this week. The print paper is due to appear in mailboxes on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays starting Feb. 18.
EO Media Chief Operating Officer Heidi Wright and Tribune Editor David Smigelski will discuss the launch of the Medford-based newsroom on the Jefferson Exchange at 9:40 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 8. (A recording of the show will be available afterwards at this link.) EO owns 15 newspapers, including the Tribune, in Oregon and Washington.
Wright, who is also publisher of the EO-owned Bend Bulletin, and Smigelski, former editor the Mail Tribune of Medford, are the second publisher-editor pair in two weeks to appear on the news show. Grants Pass Daily Courier Publisher Travis Moore and Editor Scott Stoddard discussed the Courier’s accelerated expansion into Jackson County on the show on Jan. 27. The League of Women Voters of the Rogue Valley will interview Moore at noon Thursday; the discussion will be available via Zoom at this link.
The Courier and Tribune are rushing in to fill the news vacuum left by the abrupt closure of the Mail Tribune on Jan. 13.
The Courier hired three former Mail Tribune employees — two reporters and a photographer — and added numerous print delivery and online-only subscribers, they’ve reported.
The Tribune has picked up at least 10 former Mail Tribune newsroom staffers. According to published reports, Wright has said EO Media plans to hire a newsroom staff of 14, including seven reporters, who are based out of offices in the Southern Oregon Historical Society building in Medford, formerly the site of JC Penney’s.
Both publications are touting their newspaper-family roots. The Courier is running house ads saying its roots go back to 1897 when Champ Price of Ashland and Amos Voorhies of Grants Pass teamed up to found the Courier, which is still owned by the Voorhies family (which bought Price’s share in 1899).
EO Media traces its lineage back to 1875 and the founding of the East Oregonian (EO) in Pendleton. Ownership is now in its fourth generation.
The two enterprises are offering subscriptions for both print and online access, or online only. The Courier is asking $18 a month for home delivery, while the Tribune is pegged at $16.50 a month for six-month subscriptions. Both include online access.
Online-only access to the Courier is $15 a month or $129 a year, while the Tribune is asking $16 every four weeks.
The Tribune’s introductory mailer includes articles by Smigelski, Wright and others laying out the background of EO Media and its vision for the Tribune’s role in the Rogue Valley.
“We expect to be the most authoritative news source from the Rogue River to Mount Shasta and from the Cascade crest to the Southern Oregon Coast,” Smigelski writes.
Discussions are also underway about a potential partnership with Ashland.news to produce a twice-monthly printed newspaper in Ashland.
Email Ashland.news Executive Editor Bert Etling at firstname.lastname@example.org or call or text him at 541-631-1313.