Scottish titles will run ads in addition to those as part of the UK-wide ‘All in, all together’ campaign. The UK government has confirmed that it will continue to run this scheme in Scotland as well as the additional support given by the devolved government.
Kate Forbes, Holyrood’s cabinet secretary for finance said in a tweet announcing the spend: “Scotland’s newspaper industry plays a vital role informing the public on COVID-19 developments and its impact. The Scottish government will continue to share public health messages in Scottish papers and on their digital sites.”
Scottish Newspaper Society director John McLellan told the SoE he welcomes the campaign: “The SNS is delighted that the Scottish Government will be investing in our titles and it is recognition of the key role our titles play in communicating effectively with communities up and down Scotland.
“Newspapers are no different to any other business in feeling the full effects of the Covid-19 crisis, but this investment will help ensure that our publications are in a much better place to survive the crisis.
“The Scottish Government also recognises that news publishers’ platforms, especially local ones, are vital conduits for companies large and small to market their goods and services as they rebuild in the recovery.”
Bill Heaney, editor/publisher of The Democrat, said: “This is a welcome lifebelt for Scottish newspapers which should have come sooner, much sooner, even 20 years ago when the industry first asked for help to mitigate the effect government at every level withdrawing advertising from the press and placing it on-line.
“That move was a spear in the heart of the Scottish press, particularly local papers, many of which have closed and all of which are struggling badly to keep their heads above water. Even with the handout, many of them will still not survive.
“Let’s hope the SNP are not hoping for the press to go easy on them and that everyone in the party does not follow the lead of West Dunbartonshire Council and impose censorship on their critics in a bid to close them down.”
- West Dunbartonshire Council have told The Democrat they will not follow the usual custom and practice in regard to the relationship between us and them. They insist we become members of IPSO, the organisation which replaced the failed Press Council, and we refused. They have also withdrawn media accreditation from our editor, who is an Editor Emeritus in the Society of Editors and an Honorary Life Member of the National Union of Journalists.