Thursday, May 21, 2015

Journal Sentinel responsive, but less so than Rip Van Winkle

"The Milwaukee Journal retired the Green Sheet in 1994. Readers have been calling for its return ever since.

"You talked. We listened! The Green Sheet is coming back on Monday, May 25th!"

So says a full page ad, on white newsprint but with green background, on the back page of section A of today's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. (Here's the Green Sheet's Wikipedia entry.)

There was also an article attempting to explain the revival.

"'Our readers have never stopped asking us to bring the Green Sheet back, even after 21 years,' said Journal Sentinel Editor George Stanley. 'Many readers, including some in their 30s, told us they learned to read through the Green Sheet; they wrestled their brothers and sisters over it; their parents read it with them before they could read on their own. Many also missed the lighter side of daily life the Green Sheet offered.'"
So why was it dropped? My impression is the editors regarded the Green Sheet as too provincial, too Milwaukee in a Laverne and Shirley sense. I suspect they'd also hear this from staff and subscribers who had moved here from elsewhere. All the Green Sheet had going for it was that it was popular with subscribers and readers who grew up with it, which wasn't enough since the paper regarded them as too Milwaukee, as well. [Update: see my earlier post on GS editor Wade Mosby.]

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