– All major cities deserve media diversity. Having a newspaper monopoly is neither good for the newspaper nor for the citizens, said Gunnar Stavrum, who will be the editor in charge.
He then referred to Fædrelandsvennen, which is currently the only regional newspaper with its headquarters in Kristiansand.
The new local newspaper got its name “KRS” and will be the digital city newspaper for the capital of Southern Norway. The newspaper started on August 1 this year.
Amedia is behind the online newspaper project. Amedia currently publishes more than one hundred national, regional and local newspapers in Norway.
Move to hometown
Gunnar Stavrum will lead the KRS. He is originally from Kristiansand, but since 2003 has been the editor in charge of Nettavisen.
He has now bought an apartment in town, and is taking part of his job at Nettavisen to head a local newspaper project in Kristiansand.
– I’m looking forward to returning to my hometown and actively working in journalism here, so it will be great.
Stavrum said his goal was to make newspapers for everyone living in Kristiansand.
-VI want to contribute to a proper and open debate in Kristiansand, be critical and side with the citizens, said Stavrum.
He believes that the capital city of Sørlandet has become more diverse over the years.
– Dit is no longer the slightly dull and boring southern village. It has become a throbbing metropolis, and newspapers should reflect that.
– Vibrant city newspaper
Stavrum has joined the team with Marianne Drivdal, who will be news editor. He has been editor in charge at Tvedestrandsposten for several years. Drivdal is also from Kristiansand.
– KRS should be a strong city newspaper that is close to Kristiansand and the people who live there. We will ask critical questions, but also become a newspaper that encourages local people, Drivdal told NRK.
Stavrum also hopes that this new newspaper can make a positive contribution to the openness of conflict and dissent that occurs in public.
– Ktheory of inspiration doesn’t move the world forward, and neither does uncritical journalism. So always seeking the truth is important. I believe that local democracy and the political process are very important, but they require citizens’ trust in politics.
Stavrum would not disclose how many employees they have at this time.
– “We don’t want to give Fædrelandsvennen all the cards in our hand so I’m just saying we’ll bring enough people so they’ll pay attention to us,” said Stavrum.
– Not just starting a newspaper with Fædrelandsvennen as a strong and established player. How do you see the challenge?
– After all, we have the country’s largest editor-controlled media publisher, Amedia, behind us. We have very experienced people with us, so I think we will succeed. And then I respect Fædrelandsvennen – those are established newspapers that know what they’re doing. But I think we know that too, so I think it’s going to be good competition, and healthy competition for Christians, the editors said.
And the editor-in-chief of Fædrelandsvennen, Eivind Ljøstad, welcomes the new contender.
– I almost finally thought. I think it will be great for Fædrelandsvennen, great for NRK, but especially great for readers and resources at Kristiansand.
According to Ljøstad, there has been no editor-controlled newspaper competition in the city since 1990. He believes the city is large enough that it should have two newspapers.
– Now we have to sharpen, get better and hopefully invest more.
Are you afraid of competition?
– No, I’m looking forward to it. We can benefit from digging and probing deeper into everything that’s going on in this city.
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