MEDFORD, Ore (AP) — An Oregon-based media group has announced it will start a newspaper in a southern Oregon city that saw a longstanding newspaper abruptly close this month.
EO Media Group said Friday it will open a news outlet that serves Medford and Ashland after the closure of the Mail Tribune, Jefferson Public Radio reported.
EO Media Group has 15 publications around the Pacific Northwest, including the Bulletin in Bend, Oregon. The new print and online outlet will be called The Tribune.
Heidi Wright, EO Media Group chief operating officer and publisher, said a newsroom of 14 people will be hired, including seven reporters. The paper will start as online-only.
Eventually a print edition three times a week is planned, Bulletin editor Gerry O’Brien said.
“EO Media Group, being an Oregon-based media group, saw this as a prime opportunity to alleviate what they call the news deserts that are happening around the state. That’s why we’re going into this with both feet,” O’Brien said. “I think you’ll see us try to expand into other news deserts, as they say — small town operations that don’t have a website or reporters.”
The newspaper that closed was the largest serving the Rogue Valley. Since it closed, another independent newspaper, the Grants Pass Daily Courier, has also said it will expand into Medford and has hired several former Mail Tribune reporters.
EO Media Group has also been in talks with Ashland-based online news site Ashland.news about sharing content. According to O’Brien, their partnership will allow Ashland.news to be printed once per week.
EO Media Group bought the Bulletin in 2019 after its parent company, Western Communications, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.