COMMENT

More reactions from readers to Athens Plus closure

We'll miss your first-rate newspaper. Enjoyed reading it in Kalavryta on our vacations and in our home online in Hartford, Connecticut. We're saddened by the void, but thanks for your efforts. ELIAS & MARGARITA LAKE I just read about the final edition of Athens Plus. A shame. It was a good read. I have enjoyed it over the past two years. Good luck with the upcoming digital edition. For people like me, a digital edition is a good idea. SCOTT INISS Montreal I was so sorry to read that the copy in my hands today would be the last issue. You see, I will always feel emotional about your publication... because two years ago, which as I have now read was also the start of your newspaper, I moved to Greece. I am a 35 year old Serbian girl, an English teacher, who got married to a Greek and moved to Athens. In the totally new environment for me, without a job or friends, and without any knowledge of Greek back then, my «only friend» was Athens Plus. How happy I would be when my husband came home on Fridays with the new issue for me, smiling as he knew how much it helped me feel more at home. And how proud I felt when later on the friends I met through the Greek language course asked how was it that I knew so much about all kind of events in the city! Even later, when my Greek started to evolve, I found myself wanting Athens Plus because the week simply didn't seem complete without it... This has been my first e-mail to a newspaper ever... after reading your heartfelt notification, and understanding every bit of it as I myself come from a country that has gone through more that one crisis, unfortunately, I felt that I had to send my best wishes and a big thank you. I didn't expect that tears will keep falling down my cheeks though... Sorry to see it stop...yes. Disappointed? No... You remained till the end and in the very last printed words something that you had always been... just great. You did a terrific job and you are right - if only everyone would be like you... MARIJA GENCIC A bit late, I would like to tell you how upset I was to read that you will have to stop with the publication of your outstanding newspaper. After reading Niki Kitsantonis's last City Limits column I had tears in my eyes... Since the very first issue of the Athens Plus I have spent many an hour every weekend relaxing with your excellent newspaper from which I have learned a lot about my adopted country. I will miss the Athens Plus as a trustworthy friend! With my best wishes for a better future for your colleagues and who knows: someday you might come back to us! ANIT KARYTINOU Ooms It is with great sadness that I read in this week's issue your decision to stop publishing. Athens Plus is a great newspaper that I read regularly in order to get information about this town and country. I sincerely hope that you reconsider (and also upgrade your subscription-distribution operations along the way). ARISTIDES C. FRONISTAS Nea Pendeli It was a good effort, and hopefully the past publications will remain online and available as they are nice reading for us afar so we can keep tabs on our «patrida» - even if we were not born in Greece. It does sadden me to see Greece self-destruct before our very eyes. Dealing with the status quo is never easy, but change does happen whether planned (better) or unplanned. We applaud Mr George Papandreou for his efforts to rescue a resistant Greece from the bankruptcy mill. Greece was a leader in this process, soon to be followed by other countries across the world (including, I am sure, the United States). Keep up the good work with eKathimerini. I read the English edition every day. NICK KALFAS I would like to say that Athens Plus has kept me good company for all this time and that it will be with sadness to see it go. I don't really want to go into much detail, like what I particularly like about it, but just to emphasize that I don't really like or read much of the Greek press, so please, make sure that this one stays around. ACHILLES MAINTAS It is a very sad day when the best are put on «the scrap heap,» but this is Greece where the best do not survive. Very unfortunate in this society of today. Am truly sorry about [Athens Plus] being stopped. Wishing you the best in your future. You are the most direct, truthful and humble English language editor [I have read] these 10 years since settling in my fatherland. JOHN COULBANIS Lesvos A disaster! Don't close! JANET WILLIAMS I have thoroughly enjoyed Athens Plus and was very sorry to see that publication will be suspended. I have lived in Athens for 30 years and there is nothing like getting local news in your native language. I am a loyal reader of the Athens News as well as Kathimerini in English. We need them all. If Kathimerini in English was to increase its pages, perhaps the blow of losing the Athens Plus would be easier to bear. We all know print is expensive. I've been a regular subscriber to the International Herald Tribune for some years now and I know it doesn't get cheaper - quite the contrary. And we have seen content diminish in quantity - but certainly not in quality. I agree with Renee Pappas's letter of [Saturday] morning - why not call on your subscribers to step up. I receive the Plus with my subscription - I wouldn't mind being charged for it. Or, incorporate much of the Plus into your daily edition. Again, I think most folks, no matter how financially challenged, would help subsidize this. M. FRANGIADAKI I was heartbroken to learn of the closing of Athens Plus, and reading your editorial left me with a profound sense of sadness and loss. Thank you for a wonderful publication that for the past two years combined beautiful, thoughtful design with mature, insightful and intelligent reporting, truly a rarity in Greece. (Not to mention the accurate translations and general excellent use of English.) I always bought the paper when in Athens and downloaded PDFs each week overseas. You will truly, truly be missed. Will the PDFs remain on the eKathimerini website? With much appreciation and very best wishes for the future, MARIA A. NICHOLAS New York City I very much enjoyed reading one of the most professional publications anywhere (Europe, US) and will sorely miss Athens Plus! BESSIE SKOURES Florida USA I'm a Greek-Canadian journalist who enjoyed your publication very much. As you may imagine, I am disappointed that you will no longer publish your weekly newspaper. It was, among many things, very well laid out, incredibly informative and entertaining. It's no wonder that the publication won an award. I will definitely miss it. For what it's worth, congratulations on having put out a wonderful newspaper that was Athens Plus. CATERINA PAPADOPOULOS Toronto Canada I am very sorry to hear that my favorite Greek news source is closing down. I suppose that it is more evidence of a lousy economy. Nonetheless, just wanted you to know how much my family has enjoyed this publication. ROGER G. SHIELDS Fort Myers Florida I read with sadness about the discontinuation of your publication. My wife and I own a home on Lesvos but still need to work in the USA. We have visited our island every year for 36 years and although we are able to visit only twice a year for three to four weeks we are very close to our village and friends. Your publication has kept us in touch during the many months we are away. We will greatly miss you. ROBERT & ROBIN JONES Santa Barbara California USA I am a journalist living in New York City. I am sorry to hear Athens Plus ceasing publication. Will this only be the print version, or online as well? I can imagine you have more readers online than you do for print. Please let me know as I check out ekathimerini.com daily to easily get my news from the country I continue to have pride for. ANASTASIA ECONOMIDES The Star-Ledger Newark New Jersey USA Truly a pity that such a great publication will cease to exist! I was so proud of Greece having something so top-quality for the non-Greek speakers there and abroad. Why was this decided? Some changes are really shortsighted and I think discontinuing this publication at a time when many ears are pointed towards Greece is one of these. Pity. Good luck and if this is a sign of things to come - leave Greece for something better! You get used to the bad weather... VICKY VALANOS Amsterdam The Netherlands As a reader since the first issue, I want to say how very sorry I am to hear that the newspaper has to close. Your newspaper was always so well written, with incisive comment (especially the editorial), and interesting feature articles. The layout and the contents were always much more attractive than the Athens News (although that is also good in its way) and I'm sorry to see you go. I wish you success with the online venture and lots of luck to all those who find themselves without a job now. DIANE TURNER Ano Aprovato Andros It was with great sadness and disappointment that I read of the discontinuation of Athens Plus. As a regular online reader of both the English version of Kathimerini and Athens Plus, I place great value in both publications. They not only allow me to read the news of the «patrida,» but I found Athens Plus to be especially enjoyable. It was a beautiful design with solid, thoughtful and clever writing, so good that I went to the trouble and expense of orienting it out each week to be able to take home and enjoy. It was great to be able purchase it during trips to Greece. I hope somehow, someday Athens Plus will return. I miss it already. F.P. FOTIS, PhD Assistant Vice President Student Life The Ohio State University USA How can I contribute to keep alive the best English weekly since my arrival here 40 years ago? AUGUSTUS VAN SEGGELEN Vouliagmeni I am writing to you as the UK publisher of Petros Markaris, Pavlos Matesis and Alexis Stamatis, as someone who has visited Greece about 25 times over the years and as a longtime admirer of that very special newspaper supplement, Athens Plus. I am absolutely distraught at its closure. It is the only voice in English that I am aware of which provides such comprehensive coverage over a variety of fields - at a time when Greece must surely be in need of communicating with the outside world. And while I enjoy reading the Kathimerini website six times a week in its English version, it is the Athens Plus PDF on it which springs to life every week, in terms both of content and layout. And this is true of the print version as well, of course. It is hardly for me to tell you and the owners of Kathimerini how to run your newspaper, but I would have thought that you are losing an extremely valuable asset - and one which could develop its web presence into a highly profitable enterprise. What a shame to cast aside such a gem, and one which I know is valued not only by English-speaking residents in and visitors to Greece, but by friends of Greece worldwide. I most sincerely hope that you will reconsider your closure. GARY PULSIFER Publisher Arcadia Books You have no idea how saddened my wife and I are about the news that Athens Plus will cease to publish. I am an American (born of Greek parents) who loves Greece, its culture and its people (except the politicians and those who are responsible for the current lamentable state of the country, but that's another story), and my wife is Athenian-born. We looked forward to every weekly edition and read it practically in its entirety. It brought us to Greece even though we were at home in Boston. We wish to extend our appreciation to everyone responsible for such a first-class publication, and wish the best of luck for those who have now lost their position. Efxaristoume para poli! LOUIS GEORGANTAS Wow! I am stunned! I am sad... a little piece of enjoyment in my life has disappeared. Very informative, very current, very lively and oh so broad and rich as to appeal to everyone. Every time I read it I was always wishing that I actually lived in Athens to not only read about the events and places described in its pages but to visit to them. I want to thank all of these hardworking and brilliant people that gave me great pleasure and knowledge for the last couple of years and I hope that they will resurface soon. LOUIS NIKOLAOU Toronto Canada What terribly unfortunate news, that you are closing Athens Plus. It has been a truly exceptional newspaper, and a source of endless interest and use to myself and my Hellenophile friends in the UK. It was wonderfully readable, both in design and content - with superb journalism and highly creative editing. It will be a great loss to us in the English-speaking world - but we must nevertheless thank you most profoundly for such an outstanding service over these too few years. With best wishes to all involved in Athens Plus. PETER TAYLOR We are very sorry to hear that Athens Plus has ceased - actually, it was quite a surprise to us! Athens Plus was undoubtedly a valuable source of information for high-profile readers, providing specific services. We would like to express our hope that the daily Kathimerini English Edition will be in a position to cover this wide gap as it seems that it will be the only edition aimed to the English speaking audience in Greece. We would like to thank you all for your kind help, collaboration and support given to us and for being a media sponsor covering our clients' needs over the years. Our warmest wishes to everyone and good luck in your new endeavors. MILENA AMVRAZI & THE CELEBRITYWORKS TEAM Kifissia Athens I am so sorry to hear that Athens Plus has become a casualty of the recession. This is a loss of course for the talented people that no longer have their jobs but also for a readership that relied on Athens Plus to inform them about Greece and give a positive and innovative perspective that is increasingly difficult to find elsewhere. In the last year I spent eight months on my own in Greece on maternity leave with three girls under 3 years old with my Greek mother-in-law. Athens Plus was literally a lifeline for me. It gave me an understanding of what was going on around me. It was deserving of awards won for design. I went to cultural events advertised and cooked recipes printed there. Too often, people around me told me that Greece could not change some of the practices that are holding it back. But Athens Plus always gave an alternative, creative and optimistic view. ANISE BULLIMORE London I am really shocked about the closing of Athens Plus. It was the best newspaper for the Anglophone population of Greece and additionally my parents and friends in the UK used to read Athens Plus. The problem is that only a small part of the population was aware of the existence of such a brilliant newspaper and this is a terrible mistake. The group, where the Athens Plus belongs, did not do anything to support and advertise it. Please try to bring it back to life. DIMITRIS PAPATHEODOSIOU My name is Vlasi and I am a Greek American living in NYC. I cannot tell you how disappointed I am to see the Athens Plus publication come to an end. There was nothing more that I looked forward to than coming into my office at the beginning of the week and reading Athens Plus. It kept me informed about the country my parents were born in and the country that is closest to my heart. I'm sure that you and your team did everything possible to keep this publication alive. I'd like to thank you for all the years your publication educated me, entertained me and taught me about all things Greece in what I consider to be my native land. Although I understand the nature of this ordeal, I hope this is more like a «See you in the near future» as opposed to a «Goodbye for good.» Good luck! VLASI STAMATOPOULOS New York I was extremely disappointed to read that Athens Plus will no longer be part of my Friday reading matter. I cannot believe that such an informative and vibrant newspaper is no longer with us. Being an ex Brit pat, I relied on it to fill in the gaps that I had missed from the Greek media. There was always excellent coverage of the arts, which I appreciated as I'm a former choreographer and production manager, now working in tourism. I know it's a very difficult time in Greece, I can only hope that sometime in the not-too-distant future you may be able to recreate such an appealing newspaper. Thank you for the past two-and-a-half years of great journalism. ANNE MEYERS I am a loyal Athens Plus reader from Rome, reading the weekly edition every Friday, and I have followed various types of coverage it has had (on the environment, gastronomy, the agenda of conferences, seminars and events taking place in Athens). But above all, as an archaeologist, I have followed the archaeology pages, including the latest developments and comments also on the monuments on the Italian peninsula concerning the territories of Magna Graecia, as it was called in ancient times. I am therefore absolutely disheartened as a friend of Greece and upset that this voice which corresponded so well to the character of modern Greece and which was so open to so many cultural interests without being small-town-like (as is happening ever more in Italy now, we have to admit that) will not be coming to us anymore. I have also admired the editorial quality of this publication, which deservedly received an important award from the international press in 2008. I hope that there will be some way for the publication to start coming out again. PAOLA PELAGATTI Accademico dei Lincei (Translated from the original Italian) I am very sorry, both for you and for us, that Athens Plus has ceased to provide its «good and loyal services,» as we say, terms, which in this case, I use in the superlative form. For those of us who live away from Greece, for those who find it hard reading in Greek and, in any case, for those who have a difficult time finding Greek daily newspapers, it has been a tremendous pleasure to be able to follow life in Greece, week after week. FRANCOISE FOUILLAND (Translated from the original French) I was very saddened to find out that the Athens Plus newspaper will no longer be published and that so many worthy people were left without jobs. Athens Plus was one of the most interesting, fresh and fun-to-read newspapers of Greece. It gave the reader useful insights on Athens city life and, although it primarily targeted the English-speaking audience, I know for a fact that many Greek friends and colleagues also enjoyed reading it. Its articles had always something new and interesting to share, its design was exceptional. Please pass on my sincere wishes to all of your former colleagues that put this wonderful newspaper together and I truly hope their creative talents find other means of expression. LIDA DIMITRIOU What a shock to hear about the closing of Athens Plus! As a Greek American who has traveled to Greece over 30 times, I feel a loss. This beautifully illustrated and exceptionally well-written publication not only kept everyone informed and entertained, we felt that we were a part of the continued progress of the country. Every time that I read the latest issue it was then sent on to dozens of friends. This high-caliber online weekly made us proud. The «motherland» has indeed come a long way, and we were able to connect with the progress that our parents could only have dreamed about. MADELINE GELIS Chicago, Illinois

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