July Issue: Ethnic Print Media Isn’t Extinct Yet
Never Say Die
Ethnic print media are going the way of the dodo. But one Japanese American paper went the non-profit route to say alive.
by VIVIEN KIM THORP
In June, the Nichi Bei Weekly, a Northern California Japanese American paper, hosted the second annual Soy and Tofu Festival. The event, held in San Francisco’s Japantown, drew thousands of visitors, doubling from last year and bringing the nonprofit organization some much needed funding. Three years ago, this event would not have been possible.
The Nichi Bei Weekly is an English-language, nonprofit offshoot of the Nichi Bei Times, a Japanese, bilingual paper that closed its doors in 2009 after 63 years of publication. Its roots can be traced even farther back, as the Nichi Bei Times was actually a reincarnation of the Nichi Bei Shinbun, which was founded in 1899, but forced to close after the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1942.
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