i Editor's Letter: "Leap, and a net will appear"


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The Independent Online


"Leap, and a net will appear" is a favourite (Zen) saying. So too, is one of my Ma's Italian aphorisms, loosely translated as: "It's better to live one day as a lion than a lifetime as a sheep." It sounds better in Italian. Most things do.

This is a long-winded way of saying that after two-and-a-half years as editor of i, the owner, Evgeny Lebedev, and the CEO, Andrew Mulllins, (who had the bright idea for i) have made me editorial director of their new London Live television channel, the first digital terrestrial station aimed exclusively at the capital.

All over Britain, similar licence auctions have been held already or soon will be. This was one of Jeremy Hunt's brighter initiatives as Culture Secretary: through the plethora of new television channels like London Live, Glasgow TV or Norwich's Mustard TV the much talked about "hyper-local media" may come about in a more meaningful, objective way than the dodgy council-owned paper that drops on your doormat.

On a personal level, it is a big wrench. i has been an extraordinary journey from scratch to a 300,000 circulation and 600,000 readership newspaper that is the only one currently growing. I've loved pretty much every minute; both producing the paper via the incredibly hard-working, talented team here at The Independent, and getting to know all of you, some well through correspondence, others in person via reader parties and other events. Thanks for your evangelical enthusiasm.

I'm not off yet. I'll still be here a little while longer while the owner chooses a successor. In the meantime, what would you do if you were the new editor of i?