I was amazed at the speed news of the Kapi-Mana News closing its Porirua office spread late last week! Depending on how you look at it, the loss creates an opportunity to evaluate what this city needs. The loss of a local office must be another nail in the coffin for our local paper!
I’ve had a relationship with the Kapi-Mana News for some 25 years and in that time observed a lot of change as people come and go, relationships change and frankly content deteriorates. In the early days I loved the Kapi-Mana News for its people and the strong desire to connect people and the community including business. If I was working on a local project the Kapi-Mana was my first port of call because they knew what was going on. If I needed to get a message out to the community the Kapi-Mana News was the medium to achieve that. Sadly, over the years our local newspaper has lost its power and influence.
From a business perspective it frustrates me that the best performing businesses in the city aren’t adequately acknowledged in the local paper each year. Why isn’t it news? There is so much news in this community that is un-tapped. There are so many dynamic influencers and leaders that we could all learn from and it's not reported.
As the Kapi-Mana got sucked into the corporate world of restructure we lost our local news and identity. I quite like Dr Libby but I don’t need to find her column in my local paper! In no way was this a reflection of the staff at the coalface but a change in how news was delivered and how head offices saw the future of community newspapers. I feel strongly if the Kapi-Mana News listened to the demands of a successful well-read paper with local representation.
Our city needs a newspaper that is community focused providing well balanced stories and I fail to see how the changes in place with bring the Kapi-Mana back to its former glory. We deserve to read about local and topical issues which make us think about our cities needs. I’d like to see a paper that is thought provoking and not one sided in its views. What’s more I think it’s possible.