This is The Market Monitor, the newest kid on the newspaper block, which its editors and supporters hope to be able to steer through the financially uncertain highways and byways of journalism to achieve its goal of helping provide relevant information to its readers.
Many have asked why we have decided to put out a new publication in the face of increasing indications that the days of print journalism are numbered, what with the folding up of a good number of venerable newspapers abroad, whose advertising revenues had steadily been eroded by the electronic media.
While we believe this may be true in First-World countries like the United States and the United Kingdom, it is not yet so in the Philippines, where the electronic media have yet to reach their full potential. This being the case, we in The Market Monitor feel that we stand a good chance of succeeding.
While there is surfeit of information circulating in the country 24/7, both in print and on radio and television, there is a dearth—a tragic absence, to be sure—of the kind of information that people need to improve their lot.
We cannot but agree with observations that Filipinos have more than enough stories about sex and violence that are the daily fare of existing tabloids—and, sadly, some broadsheets on the brink that desperately want to shore up their finances—and on radio and television. We are also choking daily on stories about politics and political shenanigans, not to mention sordid show-business affairs that are often given equal play-ups as legitimate news by the leading television stations. What we have so little of are stories that inspire us to greater heights, stories that can make us better human beings, stories that can make us understand more and appreciate what’s happening to our country and what we can do to contribute to its progress and thereby assure prospective generations of Filipinos of a future brighter than what their ancestors have provided them by working as virtual slaves in foreign lands.
While it is fashionable for a new publication to say it would strive to be the best, The Market Monitor will be happy and content with just being a good and reliable source of relevant, timely and useful information. We aware of the pitfalls of blind ambition and we will not follow the way of some who would not hesitate to use means fair and foul or bite and claw their way to the top just to be considered the best. No amount of success is worth all that.
We were asked: Why the “tall boy” format, which is only slightly bigger than a tabloid?
We know why the question was asked. Most dictionaries give tabloids an unflattering definition: lurid, vulgar and sensation-mongering. And nowhere else but in the Philippines have editors done their darnedest best to steadfastly stick to that definition. So much so that in our country today, tabloid journalism has become synonymous with filth. But we in The Market Monitor believe tabloids need not be dirty or smutty; we can use their small format and concise style of reporting to an advantage. We will follow the “tabloid lead” of some reputable newspapers that succeeded and are currently enjoying what they have achieved. Maybe it’s time we helped rescue the tabloid’s image from the cesspool that some editors in the Philippines have thrown it into.
Maybe it’s time to see a decent tabloid in the corridors of power, in the highest affirmation of the heights a newspaper can reach, despite its size.
In line with the tabloid’s concise style of reporting, The Market Monitor’s editors will strive hard to simply news stories—especially business stories that many readers often find complicated and difficult to understand. We will aslo try to provide insights into developing stories through backgrounds and an incisive look into their origins. It is not easy to do these thigs, we know, and we cannot always guarantee success. But our readers can rest assured we will never stop trying.
(Note: An earlier version of this piece appeared in the first edition of The Market Monitor.)