Skip to Content
Everything Else

Oklahoma Gazette to cease print operations…

2:24 PM EDT on June 8, 2023

It’s the end of an era in the Oklahoma City media scene.

Yesterday afternoon, The Oklahoma Gazette – OKC’s long-time alternative weekly that, once upon a time ago, was OKC’s go-to left-of-center news source for the arts, counter-culture, and entertainment scene – emailed advertisers informing them that it’s ceasing print operations, and officially becoming a digital-only operation. 

Yep, that’s right. We’re halfway through 2023, and the Oklahoma Gazette has finally decided to embrace the internet, just in time for it to be obliterated by AI, too. 

Here’s the email they sent:

First of all, I hope the Gazette folks haven't gone full Ryan Langston-Walters and started embedding weird punctuation in emails to catch whistleblowers!

Also, wouldn’t the final issue of a newspaper be something good to hype up and promote in, uhm, the final issue? You know, so you can better promote the transition to digital to your remaining print readers?

Here’s more:

Wow! They’re going to have podcasts, photo slideshows, and – wait for it – video! Hot Dog! While they’re at it, maybe they can build a time machine, too, and we can all take a trip back to the 2012 Internet together!

Okay… Okay…

I’m just being a snarky dick – one of the few things I’m good at – and busting some balls.

In all honesty, I’m friends and acquaintances with a lot of people involved in The Gazette and really do wish them the best of luck competing against us as they transition to the digital realm. 

I’m just going to warn them – be careful what you wish for!

Seriously, if they thought making it as a print publication in 2023 sucked, just wait until they meet the realities of running a digital one! 

Sure, you don’t have to pay printing costs every other week, but at least with being a newspaper you could charge more for ads, occasionally score national print campaigns, and book sympathy ads from local ad agencies that still had left a bit of budget room for print. Hell, you could even run a crossword puzzle, too!

As a digital publication, you not only have to get people to see and click your content – which is hardener than ever now that social media platforms have altered their algorithms – but you’re competing with the world’s wealthiest and most prominent companies for eyeballs and advertising dollars.

You know, monolithic corporations like Google, Facebook and Amazon – the same ones that have commoditized Internet advertising, priced-out advertising sustainability for all publications, and, by the way, have unlimited data, reach, and demographic targeting.

As I said, we wish them the best of luck. 

For what it’s worth, I don’t think anyone is too surprised to see this happen. Even the people who work at the paper know The Gazette is a shell of what it once was – a beaten-up artifact from a different day and age.

Just 15 years ago, the paper was routinely over 100 pages, employed a decent-sized journalism staff, and produced great content that kept people engaged and turning pages. 

For example, stuff like this:

Yep, the Gazette was so big and mighty it could even give fledgling publications the attention, credibility, and springboard they’d need to eventually supplant them as Oklahoma’s go-to local alternative news source, and not have to worry about it.

My how times have changed. 

Anyway, I guess if you’re a local historian, Judie Matthews or Steve Lackmeyer, you better snap up the few remaining print issues while they’re available. They’ll be a good “remember when” talking point for any OKC history collection. 

Also, I look forward to seeing what The Gazette’s able to accomplish as a digital publication. Will they thrive, dive or simply go the route of Yawn Doc and The Frontier and become a non-profit that's subsidized by old media families? I guess we’ll wait and see. 

Stay with The Lost Ogle. We’ll keep you advised. 

Already a user?Log in

Thanks for clicking!

Please provide your email address to continue reading.

See all subscription options

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter