JF-Online Offensive – the thorn in the flesh of left-wing media

End of March at Hohenzollerndamm 27a in Berlin. The first warm rays of sunshine fall into the editorial room of JUNGE FREIHEIT. Editor-in-chief Dieter Stein nervously taps his watch. “Is everyone here already?” He called all the employees, i.e. reporters, editors, graphic designers, colleagues from sales, accounting and reader service, together. “Where is Vollradt?”

What is meant is political chief Christian Vollradt. It’s too late – again. The missing editor arrives with an apologetic look and a full cup of steaming coffee. “The old Sido”, blasphemes trainee Vincent Steinkohl. Vollradt has honestly earned the nickname with his full beard. stone sighs. “Finally.” It should be noted that it is not a normal appointment.

Almost 40 employees have come together, standing tightly packed in the room where meetings and – very importantly – the daily editorial conferences usually take place. The faces of several external editors appear on a large television screen on the wall. Now everyone is really there, including the editorial dachshund Rudi.

The beginning of a great effort

Stein presses a button and the faces on the TV screen move to the edge. In big red letters it now says “The big online offensive”. Including a little smaller: “How we are massively expanding JF-Online and thus securing JUNGE FREIHEIT as the strongest conservative medium.” He begins his presentation. “I called all the staff together today to bring everyone up to date. I have the feeling that not everyone has noticed that we are facing a very big effort and are actually already in the middle of it.”

The JF Editor-in-Chief looks over his right shoulder. There is online boss Henning Hoffgaard. Stein reports numbers, facts, goals. “In the next five years we will focus fully on the digital transformation.”

JF on social networks Graphic: JF

change of scenery. A week earlier, Vadim Derksen was kneeling on the floor between cables, cameras and a stack of papers. “Has anyone seen the memory cards?” The brawny 1.92 meter tall, 35-year-old Russian German has only been responsible for all activities in the social networks at JUNGE FREIHEIT for a few days.

Since the beginning of March this year, to be precise. Editor Florian Werner, 28 years young, finds the object of desire. “Now we can start,” Derksen starts the camera with relief. The podcast of the JF editorial trainees Vincent Steinkohl and Lorenz Bien can start. Headphones on, microphone on. “Spaghetti Volognese” is the name of the format. It is the first part of the online offensive that has been visible and, above all, audible for some time. A first piece of the mosaic.

A small TV studio has been set up in the editorial office over the past few weeks. Light, cameras, stands. It has to be professional and has become so. The first results are already available: short videos are appearing on YouTube, Facebook and Instagram. JF is now also represented on TikTok. A video with Henning Hoffgaard on US President Joe Biden gets 135,000 views on the largely uncensored video platform and is commented on almost 700 times.

JF focuses on quality

“It went well,” says Derksen finally and strokes his red beard with satisfaction. After three quarters of an hour, the shoot is in the can. “Now add a graphic and you’re good to go.” He fires up the Photoshop image editing program and puts on his headphones. “Now please do not disturb,” murmurs the social media expert. “I still have a lot to do after that. We still have so much to do.”

A thought that will also go through the mind of JF editor-in-chief Dieter Stein in the midst of his employees on this March day. “We rely on strong online growth, more reach and more quality. Our website will be reprogrammed in 2023 and we will double the number of our online-only editors from the current five to ten,” he reports. The goal: JUNGE FREIHEIT is the strongest conservative title and a thorn in the flesh of a media landscape that is almost exclusively dominated by left-wing liberals.

The numbers are in the green

The digital offensive is helped by the fact that JF-Online is already developing very well. “All key figures are in the green,” says online boss Hoffgaard proudly. The number of visitors increased by almost 50 percent to over five million in 2022 compared to the previous year. The number of page views rose by almost 17 percent to more than 43 million. The number of subscribers and “followers” ​​also only goes in one direction on social networks. The result: time and time again, JF manages to take first place with its posts in the independent social media ranking “10,000 Flies”. Even before the world, mirror or time.

Not a matter of course. 2022 was not only a year of increasing hits, but also of personnel upheavals. In addition to the departure of long-time online boss Felix Krautkrämer, the onliners also had to cope with the loss of tried and tested editor Lukas Steinwandter. The number of editors could be maintained through the takeover of Florian Werner and Hoffgaard’s return to the newspaper – he was first a trainee between 2011 and 2016, then online editor.

And that’s not all. Since May 16 last year, there has been an online “morning shift” that is managed by the experienced journalist Frank Hauke. Readers now receive the latest news, comments and analyzes from 6.30 a.m. on weekdays. Reinforcement comes from two trainees, whose journalism training at JF has a clear online focus.

“One million euros by 2027”

The development of JF-Online Graphics: JF

The online offensive that has now started is a direct connection to an image campaign by JF that has been rolled out online and in the printed newspaper over the past few months with the new claim “For everyone who wants to know” and also the lavishly produced film ” Your job at JUNGE FREIHEIT”. Several tens of thousands of calls were followed by many applications and the acquisition of new authors.

But all of that only prepared the ground for the big serve. Stein makes it very clear what it’s all about, what JF-Online should be: up-to-date, exclusive, up-to-date and in motion. More films, video comments, graphics. And: more employees. That costs money. “We want to invest one million euros by 2027,” Stein explains to the employees in the conference room.

The limited partners who support JF with contributions have already been written to. The result is impressive. Within two months, the shareholders have already contributed 190,000 in additional capital.

Interactions between online and print

But what about the readers of the printed edition? “Without them, the online offensive would not be possible,” Stein clarifies. “They benefit from even better integration between print and online. A well-researched online article is of course also prepared in high quality in the print edition.”

Conversely, stories from the print newspaper can be accompanied online in future with even more editorial content. For example, through graphics and maps for which there is not enough space on the paper. “So it’s also worthwhile for readers of the printed JF to take a look at our website,” emphasizes the JF boss.

In the conference room on Hohenzollerndamm, the employees have many questions about the online offensive, which are answered to our complete satisfaction after just under an hour. “So,” says Stein at the end, “let’s tackle it together.” The room empties almost as quickly as the coffee cups. The editors stay behind. The next session is already waiting for you. Finally, even during an online offensive, a printed newspaper must be planned and produced.

JF 19/23

The press council agrees: support independent journalism
Just click on the link: Support independent journalism now

#JFOnline #Offensive #thorn #flesh #leftwing #media
More From Shayari.Page

Leave a Comment