The chain that publishes the Houston Voice and other gay-community papers nationwide -- including the venerable Washington Blade -- has gone kaput.
Gawker and other media are reporting that Window Media, the financially strapped company that owns more gay news titles than any other chain, has shut everything down.
The Houston Voice website now gives you an error message, and the phone "is no longer in service."
In Atlanta, where the chain has two publications, a sign on the door says "It is with GREAT regret that we must inform you that effective immediately, the operations of Window Media, LLC and Unite Media, LLC have closed down."
Window Media has been struggling for some time, so the move is not unexpected; perhaps the quickness with which the ax fell, though, is.
The Houston Voice has been around in one form or another since 1974, according to this website.
Update: We've heard from the guy who edited the Voice back when it was vital, before it went on life-support mode that involved minimum coverage. Says Eric Ervin:
The truth is that Houston Voice has been shut down for some time now. I was the last editor of the weekly newspaper format. Window Media abruptly closed up shop at least two years ago and ordered the two employees that were working there--an advertising guy and an office assistant--to work at home. You know as well as I do that that was a nice way of saying, "The end is near." Joey Guerra, who writes for the Houston Chronicle, was hired shortly afterwards to edit Houston Voice is its new form. That lasted for maybe about two issues before it was dumped. Window Media had been keeping Houston Voice's website up until recently, but it didn't feature any Houston-specific news.
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