Thursday, March 15, 2007

Jan 14 - 21 (5)

Friday, January 19, 2007
Response to caller who said "I hope you sink into the abyss''
It's not unusual to receive a few anonymous calls each week chastizing us for a story or an editorial. Today's was from a gentleman who dislikes the addition of syndicated columnist Cal Thomas on our Opinion Page, saying that he's not informed and it skews our balance of political commentary to the far right. This caller also complained that we've removed syndicated columnist Paul Krugman from our regular weekly lineup. "Keep up the bad work. I hope you sink into an abyss and that your paper goes out of business.''To others who are wondering the same thing (but more politely!) ... we are continuing to publish Paul Krugman weekly -- on our Voices page, which is opposite of the Opinion Page. Krugman's column this week appeared Monday, for example.Thomas has been running regularly on our Voices page for the past six months, as has Leonard Pitts -- and both have received praise from readers. That's partly why we moved both of them to a regular slot on the Opinion Page.Our intent is to regularly feature other columnists on Voices page. But because space on that page fluctuates we are reluctant to commit to a regular schedule.Overall, our balance of political commentary remains the same.
Posted by Sandy Duerr at 9:12 AM 1 comments Links to this post
Thursday, January 18, 2007

Do we have the right mix of sports coverage?
If you like college basketball, make sure to see staff writer Brian Milne’s story today about Derrick Jasper, the Paso Robles High star who is now starting for the University of Kentucky Wildcats. Brian did a great job of catching up with Derrick earlier this week and finding out how he is adjusting his game to the bigger, stronger athletes playing at the highest levels of college basketball.Which brings me to a question: If you love sports, do you like our mix of local, college and pro, or do you want to see more of one category? Finding the right mix is an ongoing challenge for a community paper like ours. Sports fans, we’d love to know what you think.--Tad Weber
Posted by Jeff Ballinger at 9:59 AM 4 comments Links to this post
Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Today's paper
My compliments to senior staff writer Bob Cuddy for today’s fine overview of a new plan to bring housing, and much more, to Santa Margarita. You can find the story atop our home page and leading the front page of the print edition. Bob explains what some developers are proposing to construct in Santa Margarita – proposals so big they would dramatically remake the town. Growth and development, as well as the environment, are our top focus for coverage – we call them our master narrative. We base that on consistent feedback we get from readers about what matters most to them. Are there any development issues you think we need to cover better, or are not covering at all? Let us know with your posting.I also want to commend Web producer Jeff Ballinger for this morning’s super updates on about the icy, cold weather. By 9 a.m. Jeff had posted five updates, including the important news that classes are cancelled today for schoolchildren in Atascadero, Creston, Carissa Plains, Santa Margarita and Shandon. Because of the power of the Internet, we are now able to bring you news immediately. So make your home page to keep up with the latest!-- Tad Weber
Posted by Jeff Ballinger at 9:41 AM 0 comments Links to this post
Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Want a local columnist?
David Ciaffardini wrote to say that the switch in our syndicated lineups doesn’t mean much to him, that he cares far more about local commentary. I’m glad that you raised this point, David. We selected these particular syndicated columnists because many of our readers do want to read them in print. But we recognize the need for more local commentary as well. We are always on the lookout for individuals from our county who have expertise on a specific subject and an ability to write clearly and concisely. And we’re also evaluating the idea of creating a local columnist – or two – on our staff. If anyone has specific topics you’d like such a columnist to tackle, please let us know.--Sandra Duerr
Posted by Jeff Ballinger at 9:01 AM 0 comments Links to this post
Monday, January 15, 2007

Today's paper
I appreciated senior staff writer David Sneed’s global warming story Sunday because it was an excellent example of making a worldwide phenomenon specific to our lives. His reporting was authoritative and his writing was clear. Presentation editor Joe Tarica engaged in alternative storytelling by using iconic photos to illustrate the issues involved in the story, and that made for a quick, newsy read. Nice work all around.Global warming has been on the hottest topics in our letters to the editor in recent months, so we will see what this story brings. Post a comment on that piece here, or any other topic or question you may have.-- Tad Weber
Posted by Jeff Ballinger at 8:50 AM 0 comments Links to this post
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