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With a rise in open journalism and the growing realisation that all in land management need to get back in touch with the fact that it is an industry rooted in science, literally, I cannot see how HortWeek can justify themselves anymore, let alone an increasingly phantom readership - on the one hand perpetuating and advertising bad practice yet on the other seeing no hypocrisy in filling space commentating on the disasters which occur through such bad practice. Some elements within the horticultural industry (the latest being those that have allowed the importing of Chalara fraxinea infected trees), have to become accountable and the entity that is Hortweek now simply doesn't understand this. The internet has given us all a new interactive platform - anyone who thinks this can be manipulated or censored will fail. In the words of Mulder, 'the truth is out there' and it is now only through discussion that it can be found.

Do we really need an industry wide publication anymore? Isn't it surely better to rely on the research and subsequent commentary from those working on the ground instead, because although opinions differ, the facts are there - something Hortweek has been evading for far too long.

I inadvertently deleted Rosalind's comment. Here is what she said:

"Rrosewarne has left a comment:

On Hort Week, do you see something coming in to replace it? or has the void already been filled virtually? I am surprised to hear people think and industry paper is not necessary or useful - though maybe miss interpreting. An Industry commentator be it critic or champion seems like a vital voice to me."


I don't think there's a need or desire to replace it. Our news is coming from all directions with an increasingly interconnected online world.

It's pure economics. Even if a publication is well written and packed full of interesting articles it doesn't mean the publisher is going to sell enough magazines to run and maintain a costly print run and distribution.

Hort Week missed a great opportunity in my view.

As online and e-readers get bigger and bigger (kindle/iPad etc al) I am reminded of the joke about the USA spending millions on developing a ball point that would write in outer space, the Russian's gave their astronauts pencils!

Whilst HW may have missed a trick in meeting the digital world head on I suspect more than one publication - still printed but with a virtual correspondent - would disagree that it is not possible or vital to sustain hard copy over pure digital... The Telegrah, The Guardian, The Times and so on are all developing online media positions to complement the hard copy.

Perhaps world resources will force us all to go digital eventually but I suspect there will be quite the resistance.....

I'm afraid none of the publications you mention could disagree. All of the above have seen a huge reduction in advertising revenue over the last ten years as digital eclipse paper sales.

There have been massive redundancies too as unneeded tiers of editors are ditched. It takes less personnel to run digital and the financing of infrastructure costs are nowhere near what traditional print is.

Here's a little reading:

p.s. It's more a case of parachuting these large organisations down to a size where they may compete.

There will always be a need for printed media but not in the format it used to enjoy.

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