Delaware does not have any “news deserts,” although a recent report offers a glimpse into the decline of print in the state..
A recent national report from the University of North Carolina noted a sharp decline in circulation by both dailies and weeklies in the state.
The state has two online news sites, according to the list – Delaware Business Now and Milford Live. News sites differ from blogs, which typically offer a large dose of opinion.
With three relatively large counties in a small stare, Delaware is in no danger of having a countywide news desert.
The stronghold for print is fast-growing Sussex County, home to the independently owned Cape Gazette and Coastal Point.
Kent County is home to the daily Delaware State Newsand the weekly Dover Post as well as weeklies in Smyrna and Harrington. Fast-growing Milford, which straddles the Kent-Sussex County line, has two weeklies the Chronicle and the Beacon as well as all digital Milford Live. Milford Live posts a weekly newspaper-style PDF product
New Castle County has papers that include two Gatehouse properties, the Middletown Transcript and Hockessin Community News. Adams Publishing Chesapeake owns the Newark Postand Gannett operates the daily News Journal.
All print media properties have made cuts to its newsroom as circulation dropped. The Cape Gazette may have done the best job in keeping its reporting corps intact.
The question you might be asking right now is why you don’t see weeklies at stores and newsstands or those increasingly rare new racks.
The North Carolina study says circulation has dropped from 350,000 to 130,000 among weeklies, with a drop of similar size for the two dailies.
Weekly casualties include free circulation papers that landed on driveways in Greenville, Mill Creek and Brandywine Hundred. This came after their Delaware-owned parent, the Dover Post Co. was sold to print giant Gatehouse a decade ago.
Also, no more is the weekly Seaford Leader & State Register. The Seaford Star is listed as a weekly in Seaford. Also not listed in the report was the New Castle Weekly in the city of the same name.
The database remains in operation and the site contains a section for corrections and updates.
Enjoy your weekend. The newsletter returns on Monday. – Doug Rainey, publisher.