The Onion is folding its remaining print editions and going all digital. Crain’s Chicago reports that the papers distributed in Chicago, Providence and Milwaukee are the last to go. Their last issues will be December 12.
The satirical paper has been slowly shutting down its print editions over the past few years. At one point, The Onion in print was available in 17 markets. However, as any fan of newspapers knows, times aren’t what they used to be.
“It’s sad to see a print edition no longer exist, but it’s important to see the Onion succeed,” Mike McAvoy, president of Onion Inc., told Crain’s.
Alternate title to this post? “Newspaper Realizes Newspapers are Terrible.”
Update (10:50 am):
We just received a statement from McAvoy about the closures. It’s below.
The Onion’s focus in recent years has been on growing the digital side of our business and, by ending our print contracts in Providence, Milwaukee and Chicago at the end of 2013, we will have completed the transition to becoming a 100 percent digital company. While the print edition is an important part of our history, we are very excited for the opportunities that come with prioritizing digital for even greater company growth.
By adopting an all-digital approach, our writers are able to create even more one-of-a-kind comedy content that our readers love. Overall, we we will be able to cover more timely stories/topics, increase our video output, and become a better satirical representation of the current news media.
Since this transitional process began, we have seen our audience grow stronger than ever, and our unique visitors to The Onion and A.V. Club sites have increased by more than 200 percent since July 2012. Our success has allowed us to invest in our Onion Labs creative services business and, in a short time, Labs has completed projects with brands such as Home Depot, Lenovo, 7-Up, 7-Eleven, Clorox, YouTube and DSW, among others.
This year, The Onion celebrated its 25th year satirizing news media and we believe our move to an all-digital brand, alongside our content – which is funnier than ever – will position us for continued success the next 25 years.