Daily Herald and readers: We're in this news business together
"To fear God, tell the truth and make money." That's the motto our founder, H.C. Paddock, wrote back in 1872.
I can imagine, if he were alive today, Hosea would add an equally simple, yet critical addendum: Get people to talk to you.
Technology has become a double-edged sword. It makes it easy for us to "talk" to each other. We don't have to saddle up our horse and ride two days through the mountain pass to find out what's happening on the other side. But it also makes it easy for us to hide behind our computers and never really "talk" to each other.
This week, journalists across the country will be participating in National News Engagement Day. The day was set aside as a way to remind people the news is essential for a healthy democracy and to encourage you to engage with the news.
Or, as Hosea might simply put it, talk to us.
We're doing several things at the Daily Herald this week to help put a spotlight on all the ways we use technology to talk to each other. And, because talking to each other should be easy, we're going add a few things to make it more fun.
So, here are five ways you can engage with us:
1. Talk to us on dailyherald.com
Our Editor John Lampinen put it best: "We, like most in the news media, greeted the advance of online commenting with great optimism and enthusiasm. What a boon for democracy, we thought. And it truly is, for the most part." When we saw that anonymous comments caused a lot of name-calling and insults, we switched to Facebook commenting to help clean them up. And, for the most part, it has.
Our goal is to encourage constructive conversation about issues in our communities. Thought-provoking comments that elevate the conversation. Entertaining comments that don't come at the expense of neighbors.
Come to our stories on dailyherald.com and leave a comment. Ask us a question. Share an observation. Congratulate an athlete. Ask our public officials a question.
To help spark the conversation, we'll select the comment posted before 5 p.m. on National News Engagement Day -- Tuesday, Oct. 7 -- that we think is provocative or informative without being insulting or sophomoric. That person will win four passes to Cinemark Theatres.
2. Hang out with us on Twitter
We're on Twitter @dailyherald. You can also find a list on our Twitter profile that includes all of our employees' Twitter feeds to which you can subscribe. Share news with us. Or come ask us questions. From 11 a.m. to noon on Tuesday, Political Editor Mike Riopell will hold a Twitter chat and answer your questions about the upcoming election. Just use the hashtag #dhchat
to get your questions before Mike's eyes or to follow along with the conversation.
3. Get caught reading
Get caught reading the paper, either in print or online, in your favorite suburban spots. Snap a photo and share it on Instagram, tagging us @thedailyherald. We'll compile the pictures to share in a gallery. We'll also pick our favorite one to win four passes to Cinemark Theatres.
4. Come to our Facebook page
Not only can you find out about the latest news in the 'burbs on our Facebook page, you can also share your story ideas and photos or ask our editors questions. From 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, some of our best will be on hand to chat live with you on Facebook. Editor John Lampinen, Watchdog Editor Jake Griffin, Cubs beat reporter Bruce Miles and film critic Dann Gire will answer your questions, both big and small.
Curious about baseball playoffs? Fiscal malfeasance in government? What to expect for the holiday film season? Or why we publish what we publish? Just come to www.facebook.com/DailyHeraldFans and post your questions. Or come any time during the day. Share a tip, like a story, comment on a post. We'll select someone from those who participate to win a free digital subscription. Be sure to Like the page while you're there.
5. Write a letter to the editor
Before you dismiss it as too old school, I will say letters to the editor cause a significant amount of debate. And you can submit them easily online. You can email a letter to firstname.lastname@example.org or submit an article online at www.dailyherald.com/share.
(You can also submit articles, photos and events at www.dailyherald.com/share.)
To help celebrate the great opinions we get from the community, we're leading Tuesday's print opinion page with one of your letters. Make sure you check it out (subscribers can see it online in our e-Edition at eedition.dailyherald.com).
You can see all our letters to the editor online each day at www. dailyherald.com/discuss/.
We hope you'll use your tech to talk to us this week.
Bonus engagement tip: If you are reading this online, click on my name at the top of this story. It'll take you to my bio page, which will tell you who I am, plus all the ways you can contact me, including my phone number. The same is true for all of our staff. You can also find a full company directory at www.dailyherald.com/info/staff/.
Or, if you'd prefer, you can talk to us face-to-face at the dozens of events ranging from cooking competitions to car shows that we hold each year.
After all, we live in these suburbs together. We work here. We laugh here. And we cry here.
This isn't just your news. It's our news, too. We're in this news business together.
National Newspaper WeekA variety of Daily Herald editors and writers discussed their views on the role of the newspaper in their lives, especially as it relates to the futherance of literacy and education. All of their stories and many others can be found in a special section published Oct .5 and in PDF format at dailyherald.com.