The Bulldog has been happily enjoying a spectacular rise in readership.
That was prompted last month by all the machinations surrounding a very controversial (some would say fake) budget and the travails of one member of council.
Prior to the Christmas break, readership of The Bulldog was running at about 260,000 page views a week. Such a figure caused concern for your agent. The Bulldog publishes its readership periodically and frankly, I didn’t think people would believe such a figure, its rise being so rapid.
Here’s why. In January last year, Bulldog readership was 58,730. That meant readership over the year would have risen more than four times as many as in January last year.
The Bulldog didn’t publish during the Christmas period so the December readership figure declined over the month to 184,156 page views per week. Still, that means that readership has tripled over the past year.
What’s going on? The demise of local journalism is part of it. People read or listen to Ottawa media outlets not for national or international news (they can get that online from the Globe and Mail and the New York Times), but for local news. One major Ottawa broadcast outlet early last year had but two reporters covering the city. So as you can see, local news coverage from Ottawa media outlets has plummeted.
The Bulldog emphasizes local news. That’s what the public wants from a local source of news. It seems self-evident but many media executives, for numerous and different reasons, choose to ignore that.
So people want local news. That’s one reason readers are flocking to The Bulldog. But also after five years of publishing, The Bulldog has reached a critical mass where awareness of the publication is getting around. It’s called word of mouth. It’s happening.
What all this says is that The Bulldog is now a major player in the Ottawa media market. No doubt traditional outlets would kill for this kind of readership increase. It certainly pleasantly surprises your agent.
So many thanks, as ever, for last year’s 5,000 comments and tens of thousands of readers. As ever, the Bulldog is nothing without you.
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