Ashvegas blog joins forces with the Asheville Citizen-Times

Ashvegas and the Asheville Citizen-Times announced today an innovative media marriage, a collaboration of David and Goliath, to see “how to bring the best of the blog into print on a regular basis,” explained Jason Sandford, who recently switched horses from Mountain Xpress to his former ride: the Citizen-Times. “But we’re not sure what that really means, and what form it will take,” he added in an article that appears today in the online version of the Gannett daily.

Photo by Anthony Bellemare

Sandford continues, “For you, loyal readers, that means a front-row seat to an experiment in progress. We’re figuring this out as we go along, and we’re bound to make mistakes. I hope you’ll keep that in mind as you follow along and offer your own advice and suggestions.”

Sandford served for two years as multimedia editor at Xpress. His departure was announced here.

Aside from growing his Ashvegas blog, Sandford studied journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and has worked as a reporter at publications including the Elizabethtown, N.C., Bladen Journal; the Elizabeth City, N.C., Daily Advance; the Florence, S.C., Florence Morning News; and European Stars & Stripes (while based in Germany). He also worked for nearly a decade at the Asheville Citizen-Times, as both a reporter and editor, prior to his stint at Xpress.

“Welcome to fabulous Ashvegas,” he muses in today’s announcement. “I grew up in Asheville and have lived and worked in this great town for most of my professional life. Its streets and sensibilities, its hipsters and hillbillies, its mountain views and zany news provide endless fodder for observers like me.”

Stay tuned, and don’t touch that dial.


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About Jeff Fobes
As a long-time proponent of media for social change, my early activities included coordinating the creation of a small community FM radio station to serve a poor section of St. Louis, Mo. In the 1980s I served as the editor of the "futurist" newsletter of the U.S. Association for the Club of Rome, a professional/academic group with a global focus and a mandate to act locally. During that time, I was impressed by a journalism experiment in Mississippi, in which a newspaper reporter spent a year in a small town covering how global activities impacted local events (e.g., literacy programs in Asia drove up the price of pulpwood; soybean demand in China impacted local soybean prices). Taking a cue from the Mississippi journalism experiment, I offered to help the local Green Party in western North Carolina start its own newspaper, which published under the name Green Line. Eventually the local party turned Green Line over to me, giving Asheville-area readers an independent, locally focused news source that was driven by global concerns. Over the years the monthly grew, until it morphed into the weekly Mountain Xpress in 1994. I've been its publisher since the beginning. Mountain Xpress' mission is to promote grassroots democracy (of any political persuasion) by serving the area's most active, thoughtful readers. Consider Xpress as an experiment to see if such a media operation can promote a healthy, democratic and wise community. In addition to print, today's rapidly evolving Web technosphere offers a grand opportunity to see how an interactive global information network impacts a local community when the network includes a locally focused media outlet whose aim is promote thoughtful citizen activism. Follow me @fobes

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2 thoughts on “Ashvegas blog joins forces with the Asheville Citizen-Times

  1. A. Leo Pold

    Steady on. Keep reporting the truth. Look both ways and speak freely, regardless of the purse springs.

  2. Dionysis

    Last week the AC-T ran a big story on the suspension of Matt Mattan for stating the obvious about Glenn Beck. Concurrently, Ashevegas ran a piece chiding anyone for falling for the story, insisting it was a “hoax” and that Mattan was simply off that day.

    That was not the most auspicious of beginnings.

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