When Simone broke the news about the new free newspaper, the Bend Weekly, I guess I had it stuck in my head that it was an online-only thing. Nope! I saw the actual paper in a newsbox along side all of our other local publications, and picked one up.
It appears to be about half-and-half of local content and boilerplate columns syndicated from other sources; and the introductory "welcome" article on the front page reads a little cookie cutter-ish, but all in all, it’s a pretty decently-produced paper.
In general, I’d say it’s a good thing to encourage more competition with our other newspapers, but I have to wonder how long it will last as a free pub (I’m thinking here of the Bend Bugle, which seemed to start out similarly; anyone remember that?). Worth keeping an eye on.