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Local weekly publication Synthesis turns its last page

Austin Redfern

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The cover of the Synthesis's last issue, released Monday March 30

Synthesis, a local weekly publication has decided to stop printing its weekly paper because of shifting market trends to online media.

The last issue of Synthesis was distributed on Monday, March 30 and was full of heartfelt articles from staff, former popular articles and top accomplishments.

Synthesis has been around since 1994 and was founded by Bill Fishkin and has since found 21 years of success covering a variety of topics in Chico, from Chico’s formerly thriving music scene to a poor old woman walking the Esplanade.

The popular weekly publication started off covering Chico’s music scene but had, “grown up a bit” since the first issue, says Karen Potter a former publisher of the weekly and the current Director of Operations for Apartment 8 productions.

“Once the music scene kind of died down we started covering more ‘news’ topics.” said Potter.

However recently the paper had been struggling with keeping readers as more and more of them were shifting to online. As Amy Sandoval, the editor of Synthesis, colorfully stated in her letter from the editor for the last issue, “Instead of relying on local print media for their entertainment and information (and fart jokes), everyone got a smartphone to dick around on.”

According to Potter, what made their paper special is that they had a special group of talented writers.

“We let writers use their own voice and would often let them publish what they wanted to.” Potter said, ” These are people who wouldn’t have otherwise had a voice.”

Despite stopping the print publication, Synthesis is carrying on ironically in the same medium that killed them, online.

SynMedia, the paper’s online portion is thriving as more readers have made the shift from print to online, and is steadily growing.

“The office will stay open and the same, sadly, minus some of our freelance writers.” Potter said, “We actually hired a couple people last month and plan to do the same this next month, were not going anywhere.”

Synthesis will also live on through their Facebook page, Synthesis in Chico that will continue to be updated. The page currently has 3,873 likes.

Students can pick up the last issue of Synthesis on any of the many newspaper racks around campus.

Austin Redfern can be reached at [email protected] and on twitter @austin_redfern

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Local weekly publication Synthesis turns its last page