Keeping newspapers in the family: Catch Rod Kirkpatrick on ABC’s ‘Landline’

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An ABC-TV segment on country newspapers which goes to air on Sunday week includes contributions from GXpress history columnist Rod Kirkpatrick.

“Family-owned newspapers have been steadily dying out in Australia for more than half a century as technology has advanced in leaps and bounds, allowing corporations to rationalise production procedures and trim the bottom line,” he says.

Some country papers have however remained in the one family for more than a century, among them Renmark’s ‘Murray Pioneer’.

“Harry Samuel Taylor bought the paper in 1905 and his descendants still run it today. Taylor made the ‘Pioneer’ something the local orchardists would not miss because he was an expert on horticulture and irrigation and he shared his knowledge freely through his newspaper.

“He made himself an expert on international affairs, too. In the 1920s the Renmark paper was regarded as ‘the best country newspaper in Australia’,” says Kirkpatrick.

He is interviewed in the Landline segment on Sunday, February 19, at noon.

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