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Guardian shrinks earlier than planned

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Hold up! Before you read on, please read this...

This post was published more than 16 years ago

I keep old posts on the site because I often enjoy reading old content on other people's sites. It can be interesting to see how views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have, to put it mildly, mellowed.

I'm not a believer in brushing the past under the carpet. I've written some offensive rubbish on here in the past: deleting it and pretending it never happened doesn't change that. I hope that stumbling across something that's 16 years old won't offend anyone anew, because I hope that people can understand that what I thought and felt and wrote about then is probably very different to what I think and feel and write about now. It's a relic of an (albeit recent) bygone era.

So, given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views may well have changed in the last 16 years. I have written some very silly things over the years, many of which I find cringeworthy today.
  • This post might use words or language in ways which I would now consider inappropriate, offensive, embarrassing, or all three.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken, and embedded material might not appear properly.

Okay. Consider yourself duly warned. Read on...

I was actually going to post about the lack of updates from the Guardian about it’s qualoid relaunch yesterday, but the Jackson events beat me to it. Clearly, someone at the Grauniad was reading my mind, as today Julia Day announces that it’s going to happen early next year – nine months ahead of schedule by my count.

As far as I’m personally concerned, the sooner they make the change, the better. It’ll also be interesting to see the new design they come up with – their last relaunch caused something of a storm, and the look of the paper is still reasonably unique amongst the papers. Given that they’re going full-colour, I expect that they’re going to make much use of that in the design, and I can’t imagine me liking it if they do. At least at first. But I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

It seems strange that the Guardian have dropped their previously preferred qualoid synonym ‘midi’ for ‘Berliner’. I can’t imagine them launching with ‘Berliner’, so why introduce it now? Unless, of course, it’s just a bit of a slip. I’d imagine they’d go ahead with ‘midi’, unless of course they don’t refer to the size by any term in particular, just advertising that the paper has a new look. But I’d think they’d want to at least mention it.

Other than that, my reservations are largely still the same as they were in February:

The only thing that’s been worrying me since the announcement was made last September is this:

Most importantly, from the reader’s point of view, it will not leave the Guardian’s journalism untouched, particularly in the manner and tone of presentation.

The Guardian’s tone is one its great strengths. To change it would be suicide.

Hopefully, though, it’ll be pretty much the same Guardian, with a refreshing design and a much handier size. Hopefully.

This 624th post was filed under: News and Comment.

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Comments and responses

Comment from David


    18.53, 18/06/2005

How do you know the Guardian will go full colour? It would be nice to believe so but who has authoritively said this is the case?


Comment from sjhoward (author of the post)


    18.58, 18/06/2005

It’s in the article cited above:

“Just over a year ago we made one of the most important decisions in the 184-year history of the Guardian, and the 213-year history of the Observer,” said Carolyn McCall, the chief executive of GNL, who briefed staff today.

“To design both papers again completely from scratch. To launch them in a new format never before seen in the UK. To build our own print centre and install the most modern presses in the newspaper industry. To position our papers as the first of a new generation of full-colour national newspapers.”

Emphasis added, of course.




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