"On the one hand, this has been the most difficult decision in my life," AsianWeek editor and publisher Ted Fang told me in a phone interview. "On the other hand, we're still moving forward and still have many dreams and aspirations for the Asian American community."
AsianWeek was founded by Ted's father, John Fang, in 1979 and was the nation's oldest Asian American newspaper.
Ted says AsianWeek will continue to do community outreach through its foundation and sponsor events, such as the Asian Heritage Street Celebration on May 16 in San Francisco. He also said AsianWeek.com would continue and special print editions would be published, though the details on how that would work with no staff have yet to be determined.
"It's difficult, tough and sad, but we're moving forward," Fang says.
AsianWeek's former associate editor, Lisa Wong Macabasco (who's also a Hyphen editor), says the staff of about 10 was told yesterday, and she was not too surprised, given the state of the media industry.
"I was sad, I think, even though I know AsianWeek has been controversial," she says. "Not everyone in the community has universal positive feelings about AsianWeek, but it definitely had a role."
But Lisa is right, we need ethnic media, and we need publications like AsianWeek.
Ted Fang says he's not sure what the future holds, but whatever medium it takes, "We'll still be communicating with the Asian American community in any way that works best."