Information for All: The Washington Examiner Moves Beyond the Beltway

A bastion of Beltway insider news is expanding its reach to the national level.  As Clarity Media recently announced, The Washington Examiner will dramatically increase its distribution and expand its editorial focus in 2019.

“Currently available only to lawmakers, decision-makers, and others involved in D.C.’s political process, the expanded publication will launch on Jan. 1 with new life and culture content and a nationwide subscriber footprint,” notes this press release from the publisher. “Under the continued editorial leadership of Editorial Director Hugo Gurdon, the expanded magazine will publish 44 issues per year.”

President and CEO Ryan McKibben explains the decision, saying “… we’ve frequently been asked if individuals outside of the Beltway could subscribe to the publication. With this expansion and relaunch, our aim is for the new, national Washington Examiner to build on its position as a leader in providing a conservative perspective on the events of the day.”

This is welcome news indeed in this current age of weird pseudo-news in the social stream. And it proves that consumers do want in-depth long-form content that can be trusted far more than some vague online “source.”

“Our readers have always turned to us for the best in breaking news and in-depth analysis on policy and politics,” said Gurdon. “The new Washington Examiner will include all of the news, analysis, and commentary that readers have come to expect for nearly 13 years, but now it will also include a great many regular new features that appeal to a more diverse array of readers across the U.S.”

Among those new features are:

  • A Your Land section that covers America’s evolving social culture. According to the press release, “This content speaks to the core values of the nation, and how changes to them are being promoted and resisted by different groups.”
  • A new section called Life & Arts with stories on culture, books, and sports from a variety of perspectives; and
  • A personal finance column in its Business section, along with puzzles and obituaries.

To bring about all this new content, the publisher is hiring a small team that will work with the existing magazine staff. An annual subscription will be $119, and the current 40,000+ print circulation is expected to grow significantly, according to the release.

Real journalism still matters in this world – perhaps more now than ever. We saw ad-funded online journalism take some significant hits over the past year or so, as more serious publishers gravitated toward paid content models. As consumer trust shifts away from online content, publishers like Clarity can realize a revitalized audience model that pays for content it knows it can trust.

As a nation, we are now facing our next presidential election cycle. We learned some hard lessons during the 2016 campaign around how dangerous it can be to form a political opinion based on sketchy online sources. As Dartmouth College professor Nikolay Malyarov said more than a year ago, “Standing up for facts is a kind of patriotic act and a necessary one.”

Stopping the fake news plague starts, Malyarov believes, by choosing news sources that have earned a reputation for quality journalism. This is a great place to begin.