The move to start an online competitor to the Murdoch owned Townsville Bulletin is gaining momentum . Several local businessman , unhappy with the Bulletin , are offering to put up cash for the project .
Leading the charge is Doug Kingston , North Queensland business, marketing and media consultant who worked as a journalist, sports editor and marketing manager during a 25-year career with the Bulletin .
During that time he was winner of seven International Newspaper Marketing Association awards and 14 Pacific Area Newspaper Publishers Association (PANPA) awards, including PANPA Marketer of the Year in 2000 and 2004.
Furthermore he was involved in the early development of the North Queensland Cowboys, North Queensland Fury and Townsville Crocodiles national sporting teams and received North Queensland Tourism's highest honour - Outstanding Contribution by an Individual - in 2001. Has been a director of Tennis Queensland since 2009 and a Queensland member representative to Tennis Australia since 2010.
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Appalled by much of the one sided reporting in the paper to support a particular angle , he is prepared to run the venture for nine months at his own expense to gauge the support . He has specific areas of interest, including sport , which he intends covering himself , in what will be a more balanced , wider coverage of local issues.
A website is being designed and a surprising number of journalists are showing support , some former Bulletin staff , offering to write for the paper . Other retired journalists in the area , critical of the Murdoch paper , with diverse interests and wide ranging media contacts , are closely watching proceedings .