Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Note to readers: Adirondack Almanack is here to stay

lake harris

Melissa Hart and her family on Lake Harris in Newcomb. Photo by Nancie Battalgia.

Hello, Adirondack Almanack community!

One thing that has been impressed upon me in the events unfolding these last few weeks is that the only constant is change. 

As of today, I’m stepping into my new role as online editor overseeing the Adirondack Almanack and Adirondack Explorer websites. These two local news sites are owned and run by the nonprofit news organization Getting the Word Out, which has operated out of Saranac Lake since 1998. The Explorer purchased the Almanack in 2014.

When it comes to the Almanack, I don’t see myself as much as an editor but more of a traffic controller and coordinator of the information, because the Adirondack Almanack belongs to you: the readers, contributors, commenters, and community thought-leaders.

This is a collaborative place where conversation happens about what makes the Adirondacks unique—the beautiful landscape, the complex policies that govern the land, and our special wildlife, history, communities and culture.

And that’s one thing amid this tumultuous time that won’t change. We’ll continue to run stories on all of those important Adirondack topics, along with breaking news to keep everyone informed on what’s happening around the region. We’ll be reaching out to you to get your input on a variety of top-of-mind issues affecting the park.

My job will be to manage the two websites owned by the Adirondack Explorer: AdirondackExplorer.org and AdirondackAlmanack.com. You may have noticed my name on the Almanack this week with a whole lot of information about coronavirus and how it is affecting our health systems and communities. I felt like that was what was needed now.

In less stressful times, I’ll focus on creating greater cohesion between the two websites, promoting related content as well as identifying newsworthy information that would be of interest to readers of our bi-monthly Adirondack Explorer magazine. I’ll also coordinate reporters and information for the Adirondack Explorer’s online daily report.

A bit about me: I’m a media professional with 20 years’ experience. After graduating from Plattsburgh State, I started my career as a reporter and editor with the Ithaca Journal, Fairbanks (AK) Daily News-Miner and Burlington Free Press (VT). (My first day of work was Sept. 10, 2001 at The Ithaca Journal, so I’m used to jumping into fires.) I worked as a communications specialist for the Adirondack North Country Association and currently run my own New York State Women owned Business-Enterprise Bootstrap Communications, which includes digital marketing, strategy and design. I’m a native to upstate New York and longtime resident of the Adirondacks, with family roots that go back generations in St. Lawrence County. I live in Peru, with my husband, our twin daughters, two dogs and a cat and enjoy gardening, reading, and outdoor recreation.

I look forward to connecting with you in the days to come. I encourage you to drop me a line at editor@adirondackalmanack.com.

— Melissa 

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Melissa is a journalist with experience as a reporter and editor with the Burlington Free Press, Ithaca Journal and Fairbanks Daily News-Miner. She worked as a communications specialist for the Adirondack North Country Association and runs her own New York State Women owned Business-Enterprise Bootstrap Communications, which includes digital marketing, strategy and design. She enjoys hiking, camping and other outdoors activities, and spending time with her husband, their twin daughters, and rescue animals -- two dogs and a cat.




60 Responses

  1. Paul says:

    I was very distressed to see the photo of your family in the boat with the young girls apparently only wearing puffy arm floatation. Are you aware of the following?:
    Life Jacket Law for Children Under 12
    Any youth under the age of 12 on boats 65 feet or less in length must wear a securely fastened U.S. Coast Guard approved personal floatation device of appropriate size. It does not apply if the youth is in a full enclosed cabin.

    NYS Nav. Law Section 40.1(d).

    I do not believe inflatable arm floats are Coast Guard approved.
    https://parks.ny.gov/recreation/boating/documents/PFDLawsofNewYork.pdf

    • Melissa Hart says:

      Thanks for your concern. My girls are wearing Puddle Jumpers, which I bought for them after extensive research: The Stearns Original Puddle Jumper Life Jackets have been tested and approved by the U.S. Coast Guard for use as Type V/III personal flotation devices in, on, or near the water. Meet strict requirements for use on boats, in public pools, and at water parks that require Coast Guard-approved devices.

    • JohnL says:

      Really Paul? This is your 1st thought when welcoming a new editor?

      Welcome Melissa. Your picture brings back wonderful memories of time on the water in the Adirondacks with my wife and twin daughters (they’re grown now). Good luck in the years ahead.

      • Paul says:

        Yes, I do welcome melissa and continuation of the almanack, but my primary concern is for the children, what is yours?

        • Johnl says:

          I try to worry about people/things within my sphere of influence and leave other people’s kids well being to their parents. Last word.

    • Justin Farrell says:

      John, What a way to welcome the new editor!
      Have you nothing better to do than to make a troll comment?

      Welcome to the Adirondack Almanack Melissa.

  2. David Gibson says:

    Well done and expressed, Melissa. Welcome. Thank you.

  3. Chris says:

    Best wishes. Journalism is not an easy place to be these days!

    Question: What is the company you own? A Google search for “New York State Women owned Business-Enterprise Bootstrap Communications” doesn’t come up with anything.

  4. Paul says:

    I see that. Thanks for the explanation. It is hard to believe that Puddle Jumpers are Coast Guard approved, but I see the claim by Stearns that they are. I notice the extra front floatation piece is visible on the girl on the left. However, it does from appearances seem that the girl on the right is only wearing the cheap arm floatation swim devices, which could be misinterpreted as acceptable by the casual observer. I wold not want someone who is looking for a cheap device to think those are ok for their child to wear in a boat. General guidance I have long seen especially for very young children is to wear a PFD with positive floatation support to keep the head above water. As a BSA canoeing instructor, we teach youth and adults how to properly wear a PFD buckled firm and tight with a tug to show no chance of it slipping out of arms or overhead. Stay safe and keep young children aware and close.

  5. Chuck Parker Chuck Parker says:

    As the new editor for the Adirondack Almanack may I say congratulations on your new position,
    In another comment “Chris said, “Best wishes. Journalism is not an easy place to be these days!” A while back, I addressed a question to one of the Adirondack Almanack staff about an article submitted and its accuracy. I said that I thought that the Adirondack Almanac article was lacking in any journalistic standards. He was pretty clear about it and made it clear, that journalistic standards do not apply to a publication such as the Adirondack Almanack . No apology about it and none was needed.
    As an experienced journalist, and now editor of AA do you see the standards for articles and comments posted changing at all?

    Comment: I follow the Adirondack Almanack based on the subject listed in the Email notice. To me it appears that there is a base of 10 to 15 people that submit most of the follow up comments. I am just hoping there might be some sort of change that would attract more people with their different points of view to this.

    You now have a platform that can have a renewed impact on the Adirondacks and those value it, All the best

    Chuck Parker, President, New York State Conservation Council.

    • Melissa Hart says:

      Re: As an experienced journalist, and now editor of AA do you see the standards for articles and comments posted changing at all?
      Good question, Chuck!
      I think as a trained journalist I see that as having an influence on ensuring some basic standards are being met, but I really see this forum as a true community effort and hope to include as many voices as possible in a way that’s as open and inclusive as possible.

      • ConcernedUpstate says:

        The New York State Conservation Council is a hunting and trapping advocacy organization and right wing lobbying group. On the very pages of this website they have spread outrageously false information and fear mongered in an attempt to promote their agenda. We’re talking really outlandish things like telling people we need to “harvest” more coyotes to prevent them from attacking children on swing sets (I kid you not).

        Their point of view is part of the unfortunate group think that dominated Adirondack media, editorial boards, and public discussions in the days before the internet allowed an entity like the Almanack to present alternative opinions and evidence based information.

        The previous editor/owner of this website identified them for what they were and tried to appropriately counter their comments, provide context, and limit their ability to spread obvious nonsense on this platform.

        Hopefully in your desire to include all voices and keep things open and inclusive you do not fall into the trap of both-siderism and false equivalence that plagues social media, reduces the usefulness of informational resources, and turns comment sections into virtual dumpster fires.

        • Tim-Brunswick says:

          Dear “concerned upstate”, …I couldn’t disagree with your portrayal of the coyote more, but I’ll let the facts speak for themselves and “No” I don’t respond again to comments or engage in endless debate…this will be my only response. And…yes….as an outdoors person that, hikes, paddles and “OMG”… hunts and traps …I’m a member of the NYS Conservation Council.

          Here goes:
          Coyotes are part of our eco-system in North America and generally they mind their own business and do their thing, but do they need to be managed….YES ..just as beaver must be managed or they block roadways and invade suburban back yards, flooding them and decimating trees and shrubs ( feel free to check with NYSDEC on this). Back to coyotes & fact versus fiction: they will indeed under the right circumstances attack humans, particularly when they’ve become “habituated” just as both coyotes and mountain lions have done in California and Colorado. In New York State within the past few years a woman was actually hospitalized following an attack in nearby Saratoga County by a rabid coyote (check it out…). The coyote was euthanized following the incident. A jogger in Canada was chased down and killed by coyotes in Canada some years back! More recently a coyote in downtown Chicago chased both a child and an adult and this scenario has become more common as coyotes move in closer to human habitation and/or humans move into the coyote’s backyard….

          When the population of almost all animals expand beyond the carrying capacity for that species in an area unchecked and/or “managed: by us/humans disease breaks out and conflicts with humans arise. The diseases aren’t pretty and in most cases can be transmitted to humans and/or their pets…among them are: rabies, tularemia, mange, distemper and many others (NYS DEC can educate you better than I on this issue). In other words I truly do not agree with your comments, nor do I believe you really understand what wildlife management is about in this State and many others. Thanks for listening to my views.

          • ConcernedUpstate says:

            I didn’t give a portrayal of coyotes, Tim. So I’m not sure exactly why you feel the need to tell me you disagree with it.

            I simply pointed out that the NYSCC is a hunting and trapping advocacy group and right wing lobbying organization that has been guilty of fear mongering on this website to advance their agenda. And since you are parroting their strange talking points about coyotes, it doesn’t surprise me that you are a member.

            Your “facts” about coyotes being dangerous to humans amount to A) a case of rabies, B) a decade’s old incident in Canada that was the ONLY known fatal coyote attack on a human EVER in Canada, and C) a story about some people being chased.

            This is the exact kind of silliness that the previous editor would have rightfully called out for being dishonest and having no place in informative discussions on any subject. Here’s hoping this site continues to be a place where disinformation like this is not allowed to propagate and go unchallenged.

        • Chuck Parker Chuck Parker says:

          ConcernedUpdate; What was a welcoming statement for a new editor of the Adirondack Almanack along with a request for what the future may be for the A A, you apparently saw fit to make a biased and inaccurate attack on the New York State Conservation Council. The “Council” is not in any way what your perception thinks it is.

          The New York State Conservation Council (NYSCC) was first incorporated in 1933. This date closely follows the start of the Modern Day Conservation Movement of the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. The North America Model of Wildlife Conservation, which came about in the early to mid 1900’s is another principle the NYSCC follows. Aldo Leopold and Teddy Roosevelt from the above mentioned time period are just two of the many well recognized Conservationist of that era.

          To be clear when the NYSCC talks Conservation, we are talking about Fish, Wildlife, Lands and Forest. We are also concerned with the hunter, fisherman, and the trapper and their positive impact they have for conservation. Yes we hunt, fish, and trap so do some leaders and members of the Adirondack Council, ADK Mountain Club, and the Nature Conservancy. Yes, we enjoy the gifts of hunting, fishing, and trapping but we are also an important part of management based on science, and sound management principles, not on emotion. May I reference The Wildlife Society; http://wildlife.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/North-American-model-of-Wildlife-Conservation.pdf (read the 9 principles of wildlife conservation especially #6).

          The Council by statute serves on the Conservation Fund Advisory Board, the NYS Fish Wildlife Management Board and the State Waterfowl Task Forces. We often participate in various task force or stewardship groups associated Conservation. We are a state wide organization with a county based voting membership. The positions we support are based on a voting consensus of the membership.

          Governor Cuomo has mentioned in writing that the economic impact from the sportsmen in NYS is 9.2 billion dollars a year. (Some estimates are higher.) The Governor stated at a presentation at the Altmar Fishing Hatchery that the sportsmen are the number 1 Conservationist in New York State. At a 2012 Department of the Interior presentation it was mentioned that nationally the economic impact of sportsmen nationally was 110 billion dollars a year.

          What does the Audubon society have to say about hunting? “Support deer hunting, even if you don’t like the idea. In the long run it’s the only humane solution and the only way to protect the native ecosystems that deer are part of and depend on.”Jun 20, 2007

          Back to the Council, we advocate we do not lobby. We support wise conservation and those that enjoy the outdoors.
          Chuck Parker, NYSCC President

  6. Scott says:

    John Warren was very tolerant of opposing views from reader comments (with the occaisional rebuke). I hope you will continue to allow this as the new editor.

  7. Chris says:

    Ouch…

    With all due respect to Melissa, this doesn’t look like an upgrade in staff and journalism. I assume the move was for cost-cutting as putting a (likely part-time) marcoms/PR person in the driver’s seat isn’t a move towards more critical review, and investigation, analysis, and issues-understanding.

    I am not throwing stones at the new person, but I can’t see anything close to an equivalent resume between old and new editors. Just being honest. AA and AE are wonderful resources that have built a community and obviously filled a need and done a great deal to inform the community, so I am concerned that it is going the way of local journalism in general and wish to bring up that concern to the community here.

    I know that the journalism job market has been brutal for years and the cuts to local reporting have been terrible, so understand why a journalist switches careers to PR. But I have hired may marcoms/pr individuals and outfits over the years and they are not the same as what this publication had before.

    Again, I certainly understand the dire economics of the industry, with particular note the bloodbath local journalism is taking the last week, and the difficulty that “Getting the Word Out” is likely having as a non-profit (FYI – a Google search doesn’t find anything about the parent company, nor does either the AA of AE websites explain ownership or management structure.)

    The other bloodbath that is occurring is at this time is the stripping away of environmental protections at an unprecedented pace. In just the last week the EPA issued a memo saying they were no longer enforcing many pollution regulations and rescinded the auto mileage requirements.

    AA and AE have done a great deal for environmental awareness, which, I assume is why Getting the Word Out, took them over six years ago. But I can’t read this latest change without thinking the it is another blow to local journalism and the support of the unique resource that is the Adirondack Park. Thank you to GtWO for their efforts over the last years (as well as John’s obviously.) I hope they make it.

    • Pablo Rodriguez says:

      I agree, Chris. When I see someone say they’re not as much an editor as a coordinator or facilitator or whatever, I cringe. It’s a blow to fairness and objectivity, which usually goes right out the window. Not that Mr. Warren or columnists like Mr. Gooley followed those traits, but John Warren at least allowed opposing viewpoints. I had high hopes for the new “editor,” but not now.

  8. William G Ott says:

    Captain Hart:

    John Warren was good, and I am looking forward to your excellence and balance. I already know it is there.

    Sometimes I’ll make a comment, and then after posting it, wish I had been silent. I then anxiously wait for it to drop off the cliff to the next page, where I may be safer from the responses I so justly deserve. I posted something once that I thought was so wrong that I asked John Warren to remove it, which he did. There are 851 pages of the AA on line here. The oldest article is from May 16, 2005. That article was written by John Warren. So was every other article on that page, and the page before, and the one before that, too. On page 847, “editorial staff” helps out. So I keep going back. Each article is credited to John Warren or editorial staff until I get to page 836 where a page credited to John Warren is listed as by “Ted Lehman”.

    Not until just now did did I realize John WAS the Adirondack Almanack. I want to live up to his standard. The Almanack makes me want to be a better person. I welcome Melisa Hart with an open mind and heart, and hope we can all help her to make the Almanack be all it can be.

    I got sidetracked from commenting on journalistic excellence. I do not see the New York Times here, but I do not see a lot of fake news either. What I do occasionally see is some criticism and animosity that is not helpful. Let us help Ms Hart with ours.

  9. adkDreamer says:

    Welcome Melissa Hart. I wish for you the best experience and godspeed for this site and the AE website. I am not surprised that the Haters have already popped out from underneath their rocks in preemptive attacks in this comment section, of your introductory article. Welcome to the digital jungle I suppose.

    Regardless of the Haters and Trolls, those that may comment too much and those that may comment inappropriately, this forum has been and hopefully will continue to be the ‘go to’ website for all things Adirondack. A site with compelling articles be them biased one way or the other, but most importantly providing entertainment and social media, bringing folks together that all have the common interest in the Adirondacks in some way, meaningful to each, binding all minds to some extent, adding practical value.

    • Chris says:

      “dreamer”

      Unless you have been living under a rock, you know that local journalism of this type is dying very fast right now and is on the verge of extinction. https://www.cjr.org/the_media_today/local_news_layoffs_coronavirus.php

      I am involved in local journalism and a close student of the industry. We all need to be very concerned with its safety. It is in crisis and I haven’t seen a change like this that wasn’t an indicator of significant business model problems.

      I made no personal attack to be characterized as you have me. I raised the issue (alarm in fact) and hoped for transparency – which doesn’t appear to have been afforded to John Warren or the community of readers here who might be able to help in this very difficult time.

      As I watch the current crisis of local media sites, I see that most are upfront and honest with the community on what they are faced with and how they are trying to cope. And try to get help from their readership in various ways, from donations to ideas, referrals, etc. The ones that try to operate in the dark, to paraphrase the WaPo, seem to die.

      I am concerned that the complete lack of transparency here (we don’t even know who owns this site, not to mention the founder being let go without notice) bodes ill for the challenges of today. I love this site and want it to succeed so hope that we can all help keep it going. And if you think success is easy right now, you’re dreaming.

      • Melissa Hart says:

        Maybe this will help clear things up. The Almanack is owned by the Explorer and you can read more about it here: https://www.adirondackexplorer.org/about-us
        The work being done by both entities is supported through Explorer subscriptions, advertising, and donations. If you’d like to contribute, there’s a link at the top of the page.
        And we’d be happy to have you put your sleuthing skills to work on an article, if you’re interested in writing for us!

        • Chris says:

          I would always be delighted to contribute, Melissa.

          OK, so the Explorer owns the Almanack….and “Getting the Word Out” whatever and whoever that owns the Explorer? The link you provided is unusual in that not a single person’s name is mentioned. Who are the people on the board? What is the management structure of “Getting the Word Out”?

          In all my years of supporting these things, I have never seen an anonymous entity like this. Perhaps they are shy for fear of being targeted by anti-environmentalists, which I can understand. But not having anyone claim to be in charge when changes like this are made in such dire times is very difficult to see being helpful when in times of change and, honestly, crisis, for organizations such as this.

          Thanks for your efforts and best wishes, of course, for your success.

          • Dale Jeffers says:

            Chris,

            While I agree that the Explorer is not very transparent in that it does not have the typical “who we are” link on its website, the information that you seek is readily available on the NYS Attorney General’s website, Charities Bureau.

            • Chris says:

              If I may, here’s the standard management playbook (for change or crisis) that is shown to provide the greatest success in these times. Right now, I have at least 20 communications from groups or publications along these lines:

              1) The organization (non-profit, museum, newspapers, etc.) leader communicates the reality of a situation and a strategy for getting through it (or at least a reaffirmation of their mission.)
              2) Personnel changes are made with clarity and compassion and a leader explains the change, not the affected persons.
              3) The leader appeals for support from the community in various forms.

              Everyone in the AA/AE community cherishes it and wants it to succeed. And there are probably members who can help a lot, and are really needed right now. So please take this along those lines.

      • adkDreamer says:

        Impersonalitas non concludit nec legat. Judici officium suum excedenti non paretur.

  10. Nicholas Rose says:

    congrats on your new role, you will be great!

  11. Beau Bushor says:

    Welcome
    From Indian River(Croghan, NY) the western side of the Adirondack Park.
    Peace be with you and yours,
    ❤️🌎❤️☮️❤️🇺🇳

  12. Alan Cole says:

    Good luck with your new role! Looking forward to it.

    And maybe a group photo of the two dogs and cat?

  13. Tim says:

    Welcome, Melissa! I read the Almanack every morning.
    Since the merger with the Explorer, I’ve noticed the Explorer got better, the Almanack. not so much. One series I adored was Pete Nelson’s “Lost Brook Dispatches.” I’m looking forward to your new leadership and more articles like that.

  14. Smitty says:

    Best wishes for success with the new job. I have just a couple of suggestions to offer:

    1. Some of the regular contributors are notoriously long winded. I think some editing for brevity would be helpful. A long essay may be more suitable for The Explorer. For that matter, when the piece is too long I find myself moving on to something else. ADD? Maybe.

    2. Don’t be bashful about controlling the trolls. Most people are grateful, even if you don’t hear from them. Maybe there should be a limit on how often you can comment. And dont hesitate to call out or delete false information.

    3. It would be nice to hear from a wider variety of contributors. I never did really uderstand why some people are designated as guest contributors and others aren’t.

    • Sula says:

      It would be a very good idea if more people would comment, as you suggest. Certainly they are free to do so if they are interested. Limiting how often people may comment? Wouldn’t that violate the First Amendment? There are a few trolls–just ignore them and they’ll go away.

  15. Zephyr says:

    I understand things change rapidly at media organizations, and I have been there myself. I hope it works out well for Melissa, but I am so upset that they let John Warren go in such a shabby manner I will no longer be checking in here much. John was the heart, soul, and founder of this site, and I will now be following him closely over at New York Almanack. Even if management wanted to go in another direction they owed it to John to treat him with respect. Instead, no notice.

    • William G Ott says:

      Zephyr,
      I like “heart, soul and founder”. John Warren (I almost typed John Wayne) had the wheel, gas, and brakes for many years. Then he gets pushed out the drier’s door while the (insert) was still moving, and Mrs. Hart slides in to take over. She apparently has some driving experience. Maybe the route will change. I want to see where she/we take us.

  16. Boreas says:

    Welcome Melissa! Keep the excellent content coming.

    My recommendation would be to discontinue the “Comments” section entirely. Overall, I feel it does more harm than good and ultimately foments more hate-speak that we don’t need.

    • Tim says:

      Excellent idea! People could still write to the Almanack and express their views and make suggestions. Just don’t publish them. And, contrary to one of the above comments, some rabid commenters do not go away.

      • Boreas says:

        Tim,

        They could still be published under a “Letters” section, but they would require an actual name and location. This places more of an emphasis on the articles vs. a wide range of comments. Another editorial option is to screen all comments for content, which has its own obvious problems. Melissa will need to choose the path forward.

        • Zephyr says:

          The many problems with anonymous commenting are worth it to allow people to comment who couldn’t otherwise. Just for example, I believe some comments on here have been from government officials and leaders at Adk organizations who couldn’t put their name to something without suffering consequences at work. As I wrote previously, the comments are a big reason I came here from time to time. Very interesting and useful.

  17. Lynne says:

    So happy to welcome you, Melissa, as the new editor of the Explorer’s news sites. The first week’s postings have been so informative and relevant. Thanks and keep the great stories coming. We need journalists like you more than ever.

  18. Todd Eastman says:

    Facts are rarely evenly distributed on both sides of an issue…

  19. Vanessa says:

    Welcome! I just want to note that many non-native lovers of the ADK also read these pages. 🙂 we appreciate all of the journalistic efforts of the site.

  20. Charlie S says:

    Melissa Hart says: “a true community effort and hope to include as many voices as possible in a way that’s as open and inclusive as possible.”

    It was that way with John Warren…liberal, as in very open and inclusive. It feels different already knowing he is not on the other end of these posts. I’m still curious as to why his sudden departure which, by reading his post about it, he was somewhat taken aback by it, and of course John being the good sport he is will keep it to himself. We shall see how this goes. Good luck new editor, good luck all.

  21. Charlie S says:

    Chuck Parker says: “To me it appears that there is a base of 10 to 15 people that submit most of the follow up comments. I am just hoping there might be some sort of change that would attract more people with their different points of view to this.”

    Maybe this is because that base of 10 to 15 people have more to say, or are of the mind or energy to share more Chuck. There’s nothing wrong with that. Most people don’t write at all in this country, have so very little to say about any thing at all never mind all of the crises we face, even before this coronavirus struck! What kind of change would you like? Get rid of those 10 to 15 loquacious ranters because they have more to say? Even a small hint of suppression throws me for a loop.

    • Chris says:

      The standard for UGC (“user-generated content,” which includes comments) is that 90% “lurk” and never post but gain value from those that do, 8% are occasional posters, and 2% post the vast majority of the contributions. Those 2% are actually why sites are community successful.

      I can’t imagine what this site would lose without them. There’s a tremendous amount of knowledge, particularly the on-the-ground sort, that is contributed, as well as opinions.

      • Zephyr says:

        The Comments add a lot to the site, IMHO. Sure, there are always trolls and ones I don’t agree with, but often there are very informed comments from people I know to be extremely informed on the issues. Keep the Comments coming or the site will lose a lot.

  22. Charlie S says:

    adkdreamer says: “those that may comment too much and those that may comment inappropriately…”

    According to who? None of us can ever always get it right in trying to get our communication across adkdreamer. So because none of us are God, or perfect, we should be suppressed, or not say anything at all?

  23. Charlie S says:

    Smitty says: ” Some of the regular contributors are notoriously long winded. I think some editing for brevity would be helpful.”

    Yep! Let us suppress others because we are so short-winded, or don’t have much to say, or only want to hear what we wish to hear……!

  24. Charlie S says:

    Smitty also says: “Don’t be bashful about controlling the trolls. Most people are grateful, even if you don’t hear from them. Maybe there should be a limit on how often you can comment.”

    That is very conservative of you to suggest Smitty! There’s just too much of this wishing to limit freedom to express ever since the terminology “Fake news” came into play and to be quite frank I fear for those generations yet to be because of what is evidently a growing trend in this country….ignorance.

    • Boreas says:

      Charlie,

      Some people want limits because they don’t want their views challenged – ie. fake news, fact-deniers, alternative facts. The best way to avoid all this is to close the comments section altogether. Alternatively the editors could post “Letters to the Editor” that would require a name and address, not “anon”.

      But if the editors decide to stay with the current format, I don’t know how they would improve on John Warren’s minimal intervention of comments – basically keep it civil and you can comment. But where does an editor draw the line at civility? Is including a personal or political attack along with an opposing view considered civil? Each editor will have a different view.

      • Zephyr says:

        Personally I don’t mind reading the opposing views if I want to, but I am free to ignore the ones I don’t want to read. Nobody is forcing anyone to read the comments. If you don’t like them, don’t read them! One suggestion might be to put a character limit on the comments to keep people from writing long screeds.

  25. Charlie S says:

    Sula says: “Limiting how often people may comment? Wouldn’t that violate the First Amendment?”

    Thank you Sula…I was starting to feel woozy. Thank you for the ray of light!

  26. Charlie S says:

    Zephyr says: ” I am so upset that they let John Warren go in such a shabby manner I will no longer be checking in here much. John was the heart, soul, and founder of this site.”

    So you know more than me regards John I see Zephyr. I knew something was fishy. My sentiments exactly about what you say above regards John….the heart and soul, etc…

  27. Big Burly says:

    Good morning Melissa,

    Just catching up to this great news. You will do a fantastic job !

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