Marijuana Will Save Local Newspapers (Maybe)

The New York Times has an interesting piece up today on one of FishbowlNY’s very favorite topics… the newspaper industry! Also, drugs.

The article chronicles (ahem) how The Colorado Springs Independent was able to garner enough money from “ReLeaf” — a 48-page pullout supplement packed with ads for medical marijuana — to hire a new reporter and promote three staffers to full time work. Not too shabby at all. In fact, according to the paper’s publisher, medical marijuana advertising now accounts for ten percent of the local paper’s revenue.

The paper has debuted a new column dedicated solely to covering marijuana — evidence that legal sales of the drug not only helps local papers (particularly but not exclusively alternative weeklies), but that it helps create new jobs within the industry as well.

As an added bonus, marijuana makes for great puns:

“My point of view is, for the moment at least, it’s legal,” said Stephanie Pressly, publisher of The Daily Chronicle, adding that the paper generates about $7,500 a month in advertising from medical marijuana businesses. “The joke around here is that it’s a budding business.”