Friday, January 27, 2006

EXTRA! EXTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT. . .

Exploring Interest In Townwide Newspaper

There can be no question that a free press is the cornerstone of a free society. The flow of information (and the ability to refute misinformation), the exchange of ideas, and being "in the know," are essential elements of a democracy.

No less can be said for the press here on Long Island, and the dissemination of news and commentary in the community.

While we enjoy regional coverage ala Newsday and the Long Island Press, and "local" coverage through such media outlets as the Tribune, Herald, and the Anton papers (and let's not forget the original Elmont Herald), there is an apparent void when it comes to the coverage of townwide issues.

Yes, we get a smattering of articles in the papers now serving our communities -- mainly through regurgitated press releases that amount to little more than "planted" stories (the CIA holds nothing to what some of our local governments pass off as "news!") -- but very little in-depth, substantive coverage of issues that impact directly upon Town residents.

Now, we're not talking about what happened at last week's meeting of the Levittown School Board, or which local Boy Scout was awarded Eagle Scout status. The neighborhood weeklies cover those stories well enough, we suppose. What we had in mind was exhaustive coverage -- with corresponding commentary from community leaders, civic associations, and citizen advocates -- of the quality of life issues that impact upon the lives and livelihoods of all Town residents.

Call it Hempstead Town Crier, or by any other name you choose, a townwide publication -- whether monthly, bi-monthly, or otherwise -- might be just the remedy to the "lack of information" culture that breeds complacency.

Ignorance may well be bliss to some, but here in the Town of Hempstead, in particular, and on Long Island, in general, it is the source of many woes -- not the least of which is the hit to our wallets as we "gladly" pay more than our fair share for trash collection, education, and, yes, even water. [Not that we want to pay more than our neighbor one hamlet over or, for that matter, the guy who lives across the street. We're simply not "in the know."]

So, the question must be asked -- as inquiring minds of would-be publishers want to know -- would you subscribe to a townwide newspaper, dedicated to the issues and voicing the concerns of Town of Hempstead residents?

Secondarily, would you be willing -- as a community advocate, officer of a local civic, elected official, or simply a concerned taxpayer -- to pen an article (either on a regular basis or as an occasional contributor) to a paper slated for townwide distribution?

And then, there's the question of revenues. Would you be willing to buy advertising space (either for your business and/or your community group) in a townwide publication?

We think it best that, before any other considerations, we ask whether you would like to see a townwide newspaper that covers the Town of Hempstead, in its entirety and exclusively. Toward that end, we ask you to take our e-Poll as appears below.

Then, if we've peaked your interest, contact The Community Alliance at info@thecommunityalliance.org with your comments and suggestions.
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2 comments:

  1. If the choice was available in the poll, I would have chosen:

    D. I already get all my local news from the Community Alliance

    ReplyDelete
  2. Love idea of an exclusively Town of Hempstead newspaper. Imagine an AROUND THE TOWN piece that DOESN'T have a photo of Kate Murray.

    Seriously, it would be great to get a different slant on what Town government is and isn't doing, and not simply the hype that comes out of the propaganda mill at Hempstead Town Hall.

    Thanks for the "scoop." The taxpayers apprecite it!

    ReplyDelete