ERR News, the publicly funded website that brings you Estonian news in English, announced on April 1 that it is launching its own Estonian-language news service.
With so many new English news outlets cropping up in Estonia recently, the management of ERR News has decided the news site can no longer be competitive by operating only in English.
Although there are plenty of Estonian news sites staffed by specialists of the language, including ERR's own uudised.err.ee, ERR News says it is interested in claiming the rest of the market.
Sources are saying the local Russian media are also looking to branch out and cater to Estonian readers, and ERR News has taken the hint.
"We have realized that, to operate a successful news business, you don't actually need to speak the language fluently. You don't really have to speak it at all," said Tim Bargin of APS Ltd., an international automated proliferation service brought aboard by ERR News to run the project.
Bargin said that while the site will have a sizable "Text Stories" heading, a majority of the content will consist of a headline and a photo to help readers orient. "Readers these days don't care about grammar or journalistic standards. They don't really even care about content. What they do want is a juicy headline - preferably in flashing neon colors and bold type - and a good stock photo to go with it."
When it goes live, the new site will be called ERR Newsi Sõnumid. It will be at aps.err.ee until a final domain name is picked.
ERR News to Start Estonian-Language Service (3)