One year ago today, a senior editor on a teleconference from New Jersey hit a button.
went live. Poof: Just like that. Beats me how.
I'm a guy with on his hands. I come from the days of smoke-filled newsrooms and editors who still cursed at their reporters. Sometimes the reporters cursed back.
The editors cursed as they read the stories and the copy editors grumbled about butchering the language. Phones got slammed and chairs got tossed and nobody thought there was anything wrong with any of this behavior.
Then the colleague who cursed at you would
Other times you'd linger late and hear a rumble through the building. Thundering presses were spitting out an assembly line of news, the Paragraph Factory's first draft of local history. Big men on loading docks chucked bales of them in the backs of idling trucks.
And it felt like victory to watch them pull away into the night, speeding my words to readers sound asleep in their beds.
Today we deliver the news with a touch of a button. On my computer, it's blue and says simply: "Approve." Touch it and the story goes live. Poof. Beats me how.
I often stare at that icon and hesitate a moment. No cursing editors; neither ink nor paper. No pounding press to accompany a cyber-news symphony.
But each time I do it I still get that old thrill: I get to hit that button.
I think of it as an honor: Because somewhere there are readers, asleep in their beds, who'll wake to that first draft of Plainview's history. It is a .
In the past year, we've posted more than 2,200 stories to Plainview Patch. We've covered and a , and . We added a section for local people to . We've developed an extensive calendar of events and announcements.
In that year, I've had the chance to I grew up in. I've met people and that I possible.
You have been and continue to be an integral part of Patch; in fact, we need you.
Help celebrate our birthday by thinking of Patch as a daily information necessity: Help us write that first draft of history. Here's how:
Comment on articles: We love discussion and smart debate. We welcome reader comments about small issues we may have missed. Tell us about new initiatives, school accomplishments, neighborhood issues. Don't like our coverage? Tell us. (No cursing.)
Add photos: We want your best shots. Add them to our gallery. You can also add photos to articles by clicking "Upload" near the photos we've featured. (Poof.)
Sign up for Newsletters: Get a daily summary of Plainview-specific news delivered directly to your inbox daily or once a week. The site is updated multiple times each day, so news is always fresh. Scroll to the bottom of the home page and click: "Newsletters."
Post events to the Calendar: Get the word out about your events by adding them to the calendar. Or use the calendar to browse what's going on around town.
Rate local businesses in the Directory: The Places tab features every business, school and organization in town. Use the section to find phone numbers, addresses, hours or to rate your experience there.
Track traffic jams and local gas prices: This newly-added tab features a live map of how traffic is flowing in Plainview. There's also a real-time listing of the least expensive gas in the area.
Make Announcements: Need volunteers? Get married? Lose a pet? Announce it in our announcements section so the community knows.
Somehow, all of this is possible with the touch of a button or two.
Beats me how. Still amazing, though.