From the Publisher’s Desk: Do you value what you read?

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    Teresa Wippel

    How much is MLTnews worth to you?

    Do you read us regularly? Do the comments stimulate thought, make you smile or make you angry? Do you find ideas for your weekend’s entertainment or new places to take the kids or grandkids? Does MLTnews prod you to email or call an elected official about an issue that matters to you? Does it encourage you to attend a community meeting?

    Does the work of our reporters, photographers, editors and graphic designers add value to your life?

    I have had many people tell me that we are an invaluable resource. They wake up each morning with our daily email newsletter. “It’s the first thing I read, with my coffee,” one reader said. “Thanks for always being there,” said another. “The work of your staff is valued and appreciated,” added a third.

    Yes, I know we are appreciated. But valued? The dictionary definition of valuing something is this: To estimate the monetary worth of (something).

    I have said if before: The future of journalism depends on people paying for it, literally. News organizations used to be able to rely on advertising dollars alone to pay their expenses. In fact, before the advent of Craigslist and the internet in general, they were awash in cash.

    We have wonderful local advertisers who support us, and we could not do this work without them. But Facebook and Google are sucking up more advertising dollars annually than the entire newspaper industry combined. Advertising revenue alone isn’t enough.

    Readers must step up and pay for the news they read. Producing it isn’t free. Publishing it isn’t free. Somebody needs to pay for it.

    I worry every day about the future of journalism, which I believe is the cornerstone of our democracy at every level. It’s why MLTnews editor Natalie Covate and I continue to do this work, seven days a week — to keep YOU informed about what is going on in your community.

    When was the last time YOU went to a city council meeting? A school board meeting? Yet, when those elected officials vote, their decisions impact every aspect of your life. The utility rates you pay. The salaries your kids’ teachers receive. The height of the buildings in your neighborhood.

    What is staying informed about those decisions worth to you? Do you value it?

    If so, as my late father used to often say, it’s time to put your money where your mouth is.

    Please sign up today (learn how HERE) for a voluntary subscription of any amount. Most people give $10 a month. Some give $20. Others give $5. Still others make a one-time or annual payment of $100 or more online or mail us a check. It’s easy. And I am certain you have paid $5 or $10 monthly for things you value FAR LESS than local news.

    Until next time.

    Teresa Wippel, Publisher

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