On one hand, many things have changed. The number of front-page news stories has gone down drastically to a maximum of three or, more rarely, four. The black-and-white design gave way to full colours in the 1990s. A crammed shop-house office filled with cigarette smoke and rattling sounds of typewriters has morphed into a spacious newsroom decorated with countless flat-screen TVs and occupied by tweeting reporters who have learned to create digital content.
On the other hand, we are still The Nation we told you we would be when the very first issue came out on July 1, 1971. The principles driving today’s journalists of The Nation remain the same as those that motivated the first generation of this newspaper’s reporters. Every night, we finish the job and go home safe in the knowledge that we can look you in the eye in the morning because we have told you nothing but the truth.
Governments have come and gone. There have been coups, uprisings and ideological showdowns. Cut-throat Thai politics has produced winners and losers, every one of them having his or her own version of “truth” to tell. Through all the turbulence and more peaceful times, the one thing The Nation can be certain about is that we have done our job without any hidden agenda or vested interests. And in the process, we have served as a forum for conflicting opinions to present themselves through the past four decades.
To you the loyal reader who has stuck with us through thick and thin, we can only express our gratitude by promising that what has been inspiring your trust and faith in us will never change. For those of you who may have never seen typewriters or are more familiar with our online or digital content, we are giving you the same deal: The Nation is and will always be dedicated to being your truthful and honest source of information and opinions.
Forty-one years ago, The Nation was little more than a dozen reporters, a couple of rented cars, a muggy newsroom and sheer bold motivations. It functioned with a licence borrowed from a friend and worked under a dictatorship so confident about their supposed invincibility that they told us we didn’t have to start by trying to please them too much.
If that regime was the first challenge, it was uncomplicated and is long gone. Today, several new tests are presenting themselves. We have you, our dear readers, to thank for the fact that we are standing our ground and facing them with unwavering determination.