Publisher’s Log: April 20, 2020
It’s a funny phenomenon. The pace of the day has increased. My day is over in a flash; when I think back that last Sunday was Easter, it seems like a lifetime ago. A colleague in California expressed the same happening in her life. “I don’t know where the day goes,” she said.
We were approved for the Payroll Protection Plan and funds are expected within the next 10 days. What a relief! Now we can start exploring a new business model for local journalism. (If you’d like to join in a virtual discussion about the topic, let me know.)
Speaking of the future of journalism and the local press, much of my Facebook feed is filled with news articles or commentary. This morning, a ministerial colleague posted a link to an op-ed in the Military Times. The lengthy opinion piece, written by a retired special operations chief of staff, points to examples of how the military is losing its strict adherent to codes.
It has an editor's note that explains, “This is an op-ed and as such, the opinions expressed are those of the author. If you would like to respond or have an editorial of your own you would like to submit, please contact …”
I love this language. (You may see a version coming soon to our editorial pages.) It explains to the reader what they are reading. And it clearly identifies that the piece is an op-ed. It is an opinion. Someone’s opinion. And it asks the reader to read it, understand the arguments and to respond.
This is truly a way forward. Let us actually explore the issues, identify the challenges and, together, debate and innovate the solutions.
My other thought, which is a little bit darker and hopeful at the same time, is that I'm thankful for the free press. This op-ed was not a glowing review of the changes that are happening in our military.
The free press is essential. And with that, it is all the more important that it understands its role to differentiate between what is opinion and what is a news article.
Which is a neat way of returning to my Monday morning: committed to the present and the future of getting the word out, keeping the ideas flowing and facilitating conversation about important community issues.
And finally, this exploration of journalism is a community affair. Let me know your thoughts.