Village Voice, the iconic New York City alt-weekly that began publication in 1955, announced that it would cease production Friday, nearly a year after the Voice ended its print edition and moved to digital-only.
“The Voice has been a key element of New York City journalism and is read around the world. As the first modern alternative newspaper, it literally defined a new genre of publishing,” Voice publisher Peter Barbey said in a statement. “The Voice has connected multiple generations to local and national news, music, art, theater, film, politics and activism, and showed us that its idealism could be a way of life.”
Barbey added, “In recent years, the Voice has been subject to the increasingly harsh economic realities facing those creating journalism and written media. Like many others in publishing, we were continually optimistic that relief was around the next corner. Where stability for our business is, we do not know yet. The only thing that is clear now is that we have not reached that destination.”
Over its six-decade run, the Village Voice won three Pulitzer Prizes and became an indispensable source for New York City culture, shining early spotlights on the city’s folk music and hip-hop scenes; an archival photograph of Bob Dylan adorned the final issue of Village Voice in September 2017, when the alt-weekly announced it would suspend its print edition and continue on as an online entity.
Since then, the Village Voice employed 18 staffers, 10 of whom were laid off following Friday’s announcement. The remaining staffers will help digitize the Voice‘s archives and make it “accessible” for “coming generations” before it shutters completely.
“The Village Voice was created to give speed to a cultural and social revolution, and its legacy and the voices that created that legacy are still relevant today. Perhaps more than ever,” Barbey said. “Its archives are an indispensable chronicle of history and social progress. Although the Voice will not continue publishing, we are dedicated to ensuring that its legacy will endure to inspire more generations of readers and writers to give even more speed to those same goals.”