OPINION COLUMNS

Big changes, new opportunities

By Messenger Staff | Published Wednesday, April 11, 2018

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Big changes are coming to the midweek edition of the Wise County Messenger.

Beginning next week, the midweek Messenger and All Around Wise will be combined into a single, dynamic publication and sent free to more than 27,000 Wise County residents. The weekend Messenger will remain a paid product and sent only to subscribers.

“Gradually over the past three decades, All Around Wise has become the product of choice for most advertisers because of its total market coverage. The news coverage in All Around Wise has been limited to features, photographs, columns and classified advertising with most hard news going to the Messenger’s paid subscribers,” said Roy Eaton, president of the Messenger.

“As Wise County continues to grow, we felt it was important to make the entire midweek news coverage available to everyone without charge,” Eaton said. “The popularity of advertiser-paid products has been validated by the 40-year success of our daily Update both in print and online where more than 8,000 people get the latest news every day.”

On the downside, out-of-county subscribers will no longer get the midweek edition in print but are encouraged to use the online version free of charge. They will continue to get the weekend print edition of the Messenger.

“Postal regulations make it almost impossible to send free publications out of county for readers to get the paper in a timely manner,” Eaton said.

Although the print editions of the paper will be put together differently, content and news coverage will remain the same.

Readers will continue to enjoy a great feature story in every edition of All Around Wise. Other articles that will remain in All Around include Brett Hoffman’s rodeo column and the Extension agents’ columns, plus the popular puzzles page.

The education page will move to All Around. The free circulation section will also include sports coverage, hard news and obituaries, just like the regular midweek paper.

Life Matters by Gerry Lewis and Life is Kids Stuff by Danielle Scroggins will move to the weekend paper and can be found on a traditional lifestyle page, along with birth, engagement, wedding and anniversary announcements.

The Decatur Livestock Market report will now be part of the business page in the weekend Messenger, and Wise As It Was – the new history page – will continue to be prominently featured in the weekend edition.

In addition to providing two solid print products every week, reporters will also interact with readers on multiple platforms and post stories online daily.

For 138 years, the Messenger has been a vital part of the community with a dedicated, passionate staff. We look forward to better serving readers and advertisers, sharing stories about life in Wise County and continuing to be your No. 1 source for local news.

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