Mike Gilson has been appointed editor of The Scotsman in an unexpected move announced today. Gilson, 43, is currently editor of The News in Portsmouth, which like the Scotsman group, is owned by Johnston Press.
Gilson might want to reflect upon the recent record of Scotsman editors before unpacking his things, starting with the appointment of Martin Clarke who spend a turbulent and noisy 14 months at the helm, before being replaced with Alan Ruddock in 1998.
The editorship was then passed to Tim Luckhurst for three months before being replaced by Rebecca Hardy in 2000. Hardy was replaced by Iain Martin in early 2002, who was in turn replaced by John McGurk in 2004.
However, two things have remained unchanged in that time: Firstly, the Scotsman and its sister titles still insist on freelance photographers having to sign a rights grabbing contract despite eleven of its photographers having won a major court case against the titles. And secondly, the newspaper’s circulation has been in freefall since a 2000 high of 104,000 copies: last month, it sold just over 50,000 copies at full price.