Editorial: The Pied Typer

Dan Field

Change is difficult.

It’s hard to implement and it’s hard to adopt.

Your new Lake Sun and Vernon Publishing, the new owner of Lake Media, have four issues under their respective belts. Today’s issue, Sept. 15, is No. 4.

To recap a bit, Gannett – a conglomerate publishing company that includes the USA TODAY, hundreds of local media outlets in 46 U.S. states, and Newsquest, which operates 120 local media brands in the United Kingdom. Gannett also owns the digital marketing services companies ReachLocal, UpCurve, and WordStream, and runs the largest media-owned events business in the country, USA TODAY NETWORK Ventures.

That’s not who we – Vernon Publishing – think the residents and visitors to the Lake of the Ozarks want in their newspaper. They want local, local, local coverage of everyday lives. Not Associated Press stories or Gannett features or articles written by writers who’ve never set foot in your town or mine.

One of the most immediate changes involved personnel. I’m your new editor. Charis Patires, well-respected Lake Lifestyles magazine and Vacation News editor, stayed with the editorial team as well. We hired a wet-behind-the-ears young man to handle our sports. He’s a newbie who will fit in nicely as he makes contacts, covers Osage and Camdenton sports and handles a few regular reporter assignments.

The other significant change is that the Lake Sun has gone from five days a week to twice weekly. That will be a hard pill to swallow for those of you used to getting your paper daily in the mail. 

Our belief is that we will provide a more local product.

In all of this, remember, Lake Media is a business. And to be a successful business difficult decisions have to be made. Your Wednesday and Friday editions of Lake Media will be 95 percent local – of course with your help. Already, we’re hearing from local groups, clubs, businesses and organizations asking if they can submit pertinent news about their respective groups. 

Of course, you can. Just remember, though, that we’ll edit all copy based on our experience and training, and based on the Associated Press Stylebook. The stylebook is the reporter’s bible and is used extensively by respectable news outlets. We also pledge to rely on credible, factual and verifiable information for our stories and opinion pieces. 

If you want sensationism or salacious reading, stick with Facebook or some local websites. Social media has done little to perpetuate good will, either locally or nationally. Facebook is usually used to manipulate followers into believing a particular issue based on emotion and misinformation.

So, we encourage you to stick with us. We have an open mind, but we are a business whose responsibility is not only to our readership but also to our employees.