Reading Evening Post's 21st century blues

After the Manchester Evening News went digital some months ago with its own “hub”, it is now the turn of the Reading Evening Post, another of The Guardian’s regionals, to take the plunge into the 21st century.

However, Axegrinder hears the task is proving quite difficult. For example, reporters do not have individual email addresses ‒ all email goes to a central editorial address ‒ and they can only check their communal inbox at one computer in the corner of the room.

As a result, reporters find themselves queuing across the newsroom to check if an email has arrived.

Post staff faced another technological hurdle when they discovered that the news videos, keenly placed on the paper’s website by the new online editor, could not be viewed by anyone in the office. Apparently their computers don’t have the necessary software.

Help is supposed to be at hand, as IT professionals and workmen have been floating around the office murmuring about a new email system.

Unfortunately bosses at the Post, which is relying on a digital revolution to boost profits after its ABC fell 21 per cent this year, decided not to modernise the ancient computer system.

The last Axegrinder heard, instead of going digital the paper has opted for a less expensive form of modernisation ‒ new carpets. I hope those involved land softly!

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