On-line awareness is rising

Thursday, July 17, 2008

I'm back this week to thank all of you who have offered feedback on our new website, which can be accessed at www.cassville-democrat.com. So far, we have received only positive comments, and we are excited that more and more of you are choosing to visit our site.

Our website is designed to supplement our weekly newspaper. You'll find several features, such as "On the Street" interviews with local citizens, blogs and videos, which are unique to the website.

On Tuesday, we added our latest blogger, Jerry Dean, hatchery manager at Roaring River State Park. Jerry will keep our on-line readers up to date on what's going on at the park. He is a always a great source of information and I'm glad he's agreed to share some of his wisdom on our website. In the next few weeks, the City of Cassville will come on board with a blog of their own. Their blog will be a team approach with contributions expected from Mayor Tracy Holle, City Administrator Mike Hayslip and Economic Development Director Eugene Dilbeck. We are also working on finding someone from the Shell Knob area to join our blogging effort. And remember, anyone who has an idea for a blog is welcome to approach me with their idea. The more varied our blogs, the more people will visit our website and that's what we want. I'm still looking for some area teen to step up to the plate and offer their view of the world as they see it.

We are also working on getting our site ready to accept photos and videos from our readers. On Monday night, Cassville alderman Pete Landstad was talking to me about his recent trip to Alaska with his wife, Carol. It sounded like an absolutely awesome experience and after I got home, I thought it would be great if Pete could post some of his photographs on our site. We're working on that, and hopefully you'll be able to see some beautiful Alaskan photographs soon.

When it comes to our website, I only have one complaint. I wish more of our readers would comment on the stories, editorials, blogs and letters to the editor we post. There's a simple registration process to follow and then you are allowed to comment on any story, any time. We would welcome your input, and we think comments also increase interaction, which is another goal for our website.

So if you're one of those who hasn't looked up our new website yet, don't delay. Finish reading every page of this week's newspaper and then go to your computer and access www.cassville-democrat.com and see our on-line version. And while you're at it, why not add our page to your bookmarks list and visit our site daily.