|PHOTOS: Poh Yang Zheng|
News portal goes to print in its second year.
A giant birthday cake, glasses of sparkling juice, “yam sengs,” hugs and handshakes—the atmosphere in the room was loud and joyful.
Jan. 23 marked the first anniversary for City News, and the team celebrated with a party. From its humble beginnings in October 2008 with “one and a half staff,” City News now has a team of editors, sub-editors and a force of volunteer writers, and has grown from a news portal to a print version as well.
As Tan Ye Peng, executive director of City News put it, “We thought we would need at least 10 years, but now, after one year, our very first weekly print issue will be out next month!”
The sentiments were echoed by Yuan Wenling, manager, “We hope to have our own newsroom, and eventually, a fully-equipped TV studio! Everyone played a part in City News’ growth, especially the volunteers who pooled their resources.”
“I am humbled, honored. God is with us. I’m looking forward to see how He will bring City News to the next level,” said Theresa Tan, the paper’s chief editor.
As the evening unfolded, glitzy (and some wacky) awards were given out to the most outstanding writers and newscasters in the team. “The vision and progress of City News from portal to press keeps me motivated,” lauded Bernie Guan, who won the “7-Eleven” Award for being always available to cover a story. Sally Ng, who won the “Best Newscaster” title, said, “City News presented me the opportunity to meet celebrities and TV personalities.” Best Writer Terence J.R. Lee said, “The journey has been surprising and challenging. Writing for City News never bores me. I hope to contribute for many years to come!”
City News began in 2008, when Tan had an opportune audience with Dr. David Yonggi Cho, founder of Yoido Full Gospel Church. Tan learned about Kukmin Daily, which started in 1988 and is today an influential daily in South Korea.
Together with Yuan, he began recruiting avid bloggers as voluntary writers and part-time editors.
To date, City News online has garnered over 800,000 page views, with a base audience of 40,000. City News enters its next cycle of life as a printed paper, which will be distributed weekly at City Harvest Church’s English services.
To volunteer as a writer or newscaster, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org