It looks like someone forgot to pay the bill.
The East Valley Tribune Web site died this morning, one day after the registration on its domain expired.
The Trib's IT folks will probably have the site up and running soon -- maybe even today. We're pretty sure we'd have heard if the whole company was shutting down. But this public screw-up seems like another chapter of the newspaper's Decline and Fall.
When we checked in this morning with the Trib, we saw this instead of local news:
Of course, it's hard to get too worked up about being denied something of minimal value that has no cost. But with the Tribune cutting its subscription service, shrinking its coverage area and printing on three days instead of seven, the Web site is supposed to fill in the gaps.
You'd think the Trib's parent company, Freedom Communications, could find a way to pay its domain registration bill before something like this happens.
The annual renewal fee is only nine bucks.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.