Daily News Egypt has been my home, both on a professional and personal level, for the past five years. Never have I worked with such an amazing group of dedicated and honest editors and journalists before. Never have I felt so passionate about what I do. Going to the office was a joy and putting out the paper with this group of people was always a pleasure and a rich learning experience.
But DNE has always been so much more than a newspaper, more than a job and more than an office. It became a supportive learning environment, a space where creativity and talent were nurtured, and a comfortable home where co-workers became family. I don’t want to talk about the paper because readers know the content we produced, and I think it was easy to see we poured our hearts and minds into it.
What was rare about DNE is the spirit. That combination of dedication, passion, kindness, professionalism, creativity, fun and understanding. To anyone who’s come and gone, from reporters to freelancers to interns and even visitors, the DNE spirit was palpable and infectious. I was blessed to work with this group of people, and they are the reason why I learned to love what I do, and the reason I stayed at DNE for so many years. It’s the reason DNE had the voice it had and the reason it resonated with so many people. I knew I was lucky to be with this team, and I was always afraid that it was too good to last.
Unfortunately, it has come to an end, and suffice it to say, today was one of the toughest days I’ve ever experienced. We meant to leave the office at 3 and kept lingering until 7, because we couldn’t get ourselves to walk out of the office one last time. We’re all truly grieving the loss of the paper, but more than that, the loss of our team. Not being able to work together anymore, this is the toughest part. I’d do anything for these people, with these people, and the memories I have are too many and too fond to begin to explain. My heart is breaking and the only thing keeping me sane is the continued support of the DNE editorial team. My second family. I love you.
*Below is a copy of our letter to readers, which we posted online mid-day Sunday, after we were officially informed that it was to be our last day at the office. Unfortunately, the website has been switched off (I hope temporarily) by the powers that be, so this is a copy for safekeeping.
Daily News Egypt: Final words
April 22, 2012, 2:46 pm
Last Thursday the editorial staff of Daily News Egypt was informed, quite abruptly, that our last issue was going to be the one which was published Saturday-Sunday, April 20-21, 2012.
After seven years of providing hard breaking news and analysis on Egypt, and being the only independent English-language printed daily in the country, we regret to inform our loyal readers that, as far as the current editorial staff was informed, the paper will no longer be published.
As for the website, a valuable archive of the past seven years of Egypt’s history — in politics, business, society, arts, culture and lifestyle; in text, images and videos which the dedicated editorial staff has developed and maintained, we are unfortunately not certain of its fate.
We have specifically and repeatedly requested from the management of the owning company, Egyptian Media Services, to keep the website alive, even if it means that we, the current editors and reporters, have to finance it ourselves. Both ethically and morally, we believe we should be given priority on its ownership.
The team at Daily News Egypt has put their hearts into the paper, working effortlessly and tirelessly together to produce objective, reliable, timely content, always in an amazing work atmosphere of professionalism combined with a friendly and supportive spirit.
Knowing that this is rare to find, the editorial staff of the paper has stuck it out through numerous trials and tribulations. From scarce resources to budget cuts to obstacles that we’ve overcome together, to uncertain days and nights at the office covering the revolution, never at the expense of the content we provide to readers.
We’ve grown, in a very organic manner, from merely producing a newspaper to also putting out a website with excellent multimedia content as well as developing a strong social media presence and following, all with the same limited staff.
And the staff members we sadly lost along the way have found greener pastures in the most prestigious news organizations like Al Jazeera, Reuters, CNN and Bloomberg, which ultimately makes us all very proud.
It would be an understatement to say that the editorial team is attached to DNE and to each other; we think of ourselves as a family more than merely colleagues, including those who have come and gone, and especially including our loyal freelancers, contributors and interns.
It’s our deep regret to have to disband for the time being and not be able to produce the paper anymore. But we’d like to thank you, our loyal readers, for your support and consistently positive feedback over the years.
Rania Al Malky, Chief Editor
Sarah El Sirgany, Deputy Editor
Amira Salah-Ahmed, Business Editor
Dalia Rabie, Features Editor
Joseph Fahim, Culture Editor
Heba Elkayal, Lifestyle Editor
Safaa Abdoun, Features Writer / Reporter
Heba Fahmy, News Reporter
Heba Hesham, News Reporter
Mai Shams El Din, News Reporter / Editorial Assistant
Reem Abdellatif, Business Reporter
Farah Saafan, Video Journalist
Abdel Azim Saafan, Graphic Designer
Osama Taher, Graphic Designer
Hassan Ibrahim, Photographer