Since its launch in 2019, PolarJournal has served up the latest, exciting, curious and sometimes sad news from the polar regions to its readers on practically a daily basis. Numerous positive and also critical feedback from the polar community and from interested readers has reached us in the past year and spurred us. Presenting the thematic diversity of the Arctic and Antarctic and bringing it closer to a broad audience remains the goal of PolarJournal in its third year, which is now starting. But today it is time for a short review and outlook.
Joy reigns at PolarJournal: The second birthday since its foundation is celebrated today. But: This year we’ll do it measure-conform again, because we’re all spread out in Switzerland and Germany, like the in last twelve months, and see each other via webcams and hear each other via loudspeakers. At least for a little while longer. Because the openings are coming and we stand ready all vaccinated.
Clearly, the past year also has been a year full of challenges, difficulties and surprises, both positive and negative, for us at PolarJournal. Despite the increased interest, the polar community is still lucid. Thus, we rejoice for our friends and partners in opening Svalbard for an Arctic season in 2021, we also mourn at the tragic loss of polar starts and friends such as Koni Steffen, Dixie Dansercoe and Alexey Nazarov. We think of the people at COVID outbreaks on Antarctic stations and remote Arctic regions, question the sense of nuclear-powered ships in Antarctica, and tirelessly point out the problems that exist in the North and South on the subject of climate.
The past year shows that the world does not stand still for us, COVID does not slow us down. Interest in the Arctic and Antarctic is stronger than ever. This in turn has led to more news from North and South being available for us to share with our readership. And to that end, we have a few new features planned for our third year.
A new feature on our website is the “News around the world”. The number of news from the far north and the deep south has reached such a huge amount that we can hardly keep up with the reporting. There are now 1,909 articles published on the PolarJournal website since 2019 and there could have been many more. Therefore, we have added a news ticker on the homepage to inform you about further news in the Arctic and Antarctic. With one click you will get directly to selected and reliable press releases, articles and videos. Depending on which language page you enter from (German or English), you will also land on a corresponding language page. The contents of these messages are designed directly by the organizations, institutions and companies. However, since we only use reputable sources such as the Alfred Wegener Institute, the British Antarctic Survey or university websites, the content of such reports is, according to our credo, factual and generally understandable.
A second innovation we have planned will be, so to speak, the birthday present from us to all the readers worldwide. Correct: Worldwide! Because thanks to the fact that we have also been publishing our articles in English since May 2020, we now reach practically the entire globe. Our readership stretches from Svalbard to New Zealand and Australia, from Russia and China to the USA and Canada. Around 1,000 readers a day get their news from the Arctic and Antarctic on our website. This is very remarkable compared to similar polar news platforms and only possible thanks to our quality and above all the enthusiasm and joy of our readers and followers. And it spurs us on to achieve even more. That’s why we have now planned an innovation, which we are very proud of and which we want to publish in the coming days. But not too much is revealed yet… a little patience is still required. So keep the tension up and raise your glasses with us at the same time. Here’s to you and another year with PolarJournal!
Dr Michael Wenger, PolarJournal
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