It’s needless to say that the newspaper industry has changed over the last several years.



There have been changes in look, feel, staff and usage that even the most elementary of reader can spot.



Here at The Morning Sun, it is no different.

It’s needless to say that the newspaper industry has changed over the last several years.

There have been changes in look, feel, staff and usage that even the most elementary of reader can spot.

Here at The Morning Sun, it is no different.

The look and feel of this paper has changed just in the seven years I have been employed.

And changes continue to come.

Regularly, I will look at things like coverage, the Internet and the print product and address some issues that the public may have questions about.

First in Print
As many may have noticed, for about the last two months, there have been some stories in the print version of The Morning Sun that have been designated as First in Print.

They are so designated by a logo inside the story that says such.

The primary reason for this is to, quite simply, provide content that benefits our print readers as opposed to those who just chose to view content on our website (www.morningsun.net).

It is my job to distinguish which stories are chosen as First in Print stories.

At the end of the day, I will look through what we call our newspaper budget. It is a list of stories that we are planning for the next day’s paper. From there, I will determine the estimated placement of those stories and rank them accordingly. In addition, I will also determine three stories we hold as First in Print.

These stories will appear on the website, but at least 48-72 hours after they appear in the print version of the product.

The website
If you are a frequent visitor to our website, you will notice that there is news posted throughout the day, whether it be from our partners at GateHouse News Service, the Associated Press or locally generated.

We try to enforce a schedule of uploading news every hour and on the half-hour during the afternoon.

In addition, we usually would “dump” all of our content for the next day at the same time ... roughly 2 a.m.

I decided to stop “dumping” all of our news on the website at the same time.

Studies show that there are very few people who actually look at a newspaper website at 2 a.m. So, instead of putting all of our content up at one time, the decision was made to put the news out in steps throughout the day. Web viewers will still be able to see the news of the day’s paper online, however, it will be more spaced out, typically beginning at 8 a.m.

Alternative story formats
Another thing that is relatively new to the pages of The Morning Sun is stories told in different formats.

These are referred to, in the industry, as alternative story formats.

They are simply a different way to tell a story. Things like personality profiles, community service journalism and the like are used in something beyond just the common way of storytelling.

The same type of information is presented, just in a different way.

We have scheduled such items to appear in The Morning Sun at a frequency of about once per day. We have implemented things like Business Q&A, Educator Q&A, What’s your question (where we invite reader questions for us to answer), Public Service Q&A and Faith-based information.

These are just some of the things that we have implemented here at The Morning Sun. Of course, there are other things that may or may not work, but it never hurts to at least try.

My door, and phone, are always open and I always welcome comments, questions or concerns about what we do here at The Morning Sun.

Feel free to call me here at the paper or e-mail me at matthew.clark@morningsun.net.