Saturday, October 6, 2012
Newspapers, this one included, are working through a new period of changes as we observe National Newspaper Week, Oct. 7-13.
We used to type up the news with manual typewriters and “soup” our film in smelly chemicals.
Now copy is speedily written on computers and photos are all digitally made and processed.
It used to be that color photos were a rare exception, and readers had few ways of communicating news besides the rotary phone and face-to-face contact.
We now run color as a matter of course and our phones are cellular and mobile — and photos taken on those devices increasingly make their way into the paper and onto our website.
The only news-gathering method that will NEVER diminish is face-to-face. We rely on that, no matter what techno changes take place.
The point is that newspapers and their technology and formats have changed many times over the years — single-sheet, two-page editions were once the norm — and there will always be these evolutions in the trade.
We are in such a phase now, and as we celebrate National Newspaper Week we also celebrate that our newspaper is part of a larger, faster, more responsive set of communication tools.
We are classified as a weekly, but our work is daily.
n Hood River News is published twice a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays. It “hits the streets” (a term we will always love) by 3 p.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays, which is one reason you see items about Oct. 5 events in this Oct. 6 edition.
n Our hoodrivernews.com website is one week into a extensive remodel — a real makeover. More improvements are on the way, but if you have not looked at the website in the past week, you’ll enjoy the greatly increased variety, speed and accessibility. Viewers see something new there every day.
n Readers increasingly communicate with this newspaper on Facebook and Twitter.
In fact, phrases such as “You should get this in the HRN” is one refrain among commenters via social media.
This National Newspaper Week, we say with a sense of modesty that we view ourselves as a “news service,” and that role is one that changes daily.
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Lawnmower torches Arbor Vitae on Portland Drive
The riding lawn mower driven by Norma Cannon overheated and made contact with dry arbor vitae owned by Lee and Norma Curtis, sending more than a dozen of the tightly-packed trees up in flames. The mower, visible at far right, was totaled. No one was injured; neighbors first kept the fire at bay with garden hoses and Westside and Hood River Fire Departments responded and doused the fire before it reached any structures. Westside Fire chief Jim Trammell, in blue shirt, directs firefighters. The video was taken by Capt. Dave Smith of Hood River Fire Department. Enlarge