DC Thomson

DC Thomson’s digital transformation promised a newsroom revolution driven by an unprecedented upskilling of journalists and advances in insights and data.

The Courier had grown its subscriber base by more than 10,000 and attracts more than 1m unique users per month. In order to achieve our ambitious plans, we increased our cohort of journalists and introduced new specialist teams. We redesigned our website, with a relentless focus on user experience, engagement and quality journalism. Engaged page views per day more than doubled and we attracted over 25k sign-ups to our comprehensive range of newsletters, while reader interaction time also increased. We are also now embracing data (our Quality Reads metric allows us to see the percentage of PVs where the reader has read at least half of the article) to get closer to audiences than ever before. A highlight was The Courier data team’s special Remembrance project. Its scrollytelling format told the story of 6,089 Dundee WW1 victims and allowed readers to search their names, ages, ranks and addresses. This year we introduced The Courier Daily, a free five-minute daily audio news briefing. We also published our simple energy bill calculator to help readers during the cost of living crisis. We have given a voice to victims of sex crimes and broke news of the signing of David Goodwillie – a footballer branded a rapist by a civil court judge – which threatened the very existence of Raith Rovers and led to 16 major figures or organisations severing ties with the club. Our sports writer, Alan Temple, exclusively reported the first resignation in protest at the transfer, that of director and former chairman and Bill Clark. Alan produced THE inside story article on the deal before conducting, four months later, an astonishing interview with John Sim in which the departed chairman admitted his first instinct during the row was to close the 139-year-old football club out of sympathy for the rapist striker. A groundbreaking column from a Rovers employee and the definitive explainer from our court team on the landmark civil case followed. In recent months, The Courier has led the way on the tale of Dundee man Jason Grant becoming Scotland’s first ever period dignity officer. Health and Wellbeing writer Cara Forrester revealed Jason’s appointment in his only interview, prompting a global backlash in the week Scotland became the first country to pass a law ensuring period products are free. The Washington Post highlighted The Courier’s coverage while Cara and Dundee area editor, Jake Keith, uncovered a story of a lack of accountability around the use of taxpayer funds and a bona fide public relations disaster. In September, Jake Keith also exclusively revealed the period dignity role had been axed and that Mr Grant was taking legal action and considering a sex discrimination claim. Revelations around the closure of Dundee's Olympia Swimming Pool proved a major hit with our audiences. 2021 and 2022 have been truly momentous years for The Courier and we’re confident 2023 will be even greater.