By Oghenekevwe Uchechukwu

THE world’s oldest national newspaper Wiener Zeitung, printed its last daily edition on Friday, June 30, marking the end of its long-standing tradition as a hard-copy publication.

Founded in 1703, the Vienna, Austria-based newspaper made a transition to online due to financial challenges caused by a decline in advertising revenue and a change in legislation.

As the world’s oldest national newspaper, Wiener Zeitung had a rich legacy of delivering news to its readers through the traditional medium of print.

However, a law passed in April by Austria’s coalition government abolished the requirement for companies to pay for publishing public announcements in the print edition of Wiener Zeitung, effectively stripping the newspaper of its official gazette status.

This legal alteration had far-reaching consequences for Wiener Zeitung, resulting in a substantial loss of revenue estimated at around €18 million (£15 million), according to Der Spiegel.

Consequently, Wiener Zeitung had to undertake restructuring measures, eliminating sixty-three jobs, including a substantial reduction in the editorial staff from 55 to 20 members.

Despite these challenges, the newspaper remains committed to its readership and will continue to operate as an online publication.

Additionally, the organisation is exploring the possibility of releasing a monthly print edition, although the specifics of this plan are still being developed.

Wiener Zeitung has witnessed and adapted to numerous changes throughout the centuries.

This latest transformation underscores the evolving landscape of the media industry, where digital platforms are increasingly becoming the primary medium for news consumption.

The decision to cease the hard copy publication was primarily driven by a significant decline in advertising revenue, making it financially unsustainable to continue printing the newspaper.

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