RYAN C. TUCK: Helping Make E-Dreams Come True
Check out Tuck's Blog
My baby sister's birthday is today, and it's got me thinking about all the birthday wishes I've made over the years.
A new Huffy five-speed bike in third grade. An all-in-one gym bag/backpack in fifth. My own 13-inch TV in eighth! Four wheels and a license to kill for No. 16.
We in the newspaper business are still like kids blowing out those candles sometimes. We wish for a lot of things and work hard to ensure they happen.
But since we're grownups -- and don't believe in such jinxes anymore -- I'd thought I'd share a few of our birthday wishes here at ThePilot.com.
1. An informed electorate come Election Day. Newspapers and voter advocacy are like peas and carrots -- always have been. Whether through editorials, candidate profiles or public events -- like Monday's voter forum -- The Pilot is working to inform you this November. All you have to do is pay attention and vote.
At ThePilot.com, we are compiling all voter materials into an online voting guide. Accessed through the News section, Elections 2006 will include all forum stories, candidate profiles, editorials and even audio from that Monday forum.
On our blogs, we continue to introduce commentary and spark discussion on the different races. Log on and interact with other concerned voters of the area.
2. Accountability for public officials. This follows up closely behind No. 1. We want elected officials to remember their obligations once in office. Few people make it out to meetings or confront their elected officials about the issues, so we do it for them.
On our Web site, we advertise all public meetings and then run roundups from those meetings afterward. Stay home, leave the TV on "Lost" and check the Web site to stay up on the elected officials of your area. All you have to do is cry foul if they've gone astray.
3. Public safety. If no one is safe, who will read us? We want this area to know about potential dangers and hazards. To that end, we print any and all crime news or public service announcements as they happen. Check ThePilot.com for up-to-the-minute releases and briefs and find out what's going on in your area.
4. Healthy children. Nothing is more important than our youth, our future. To that end, we like to keep them happy by reporting on all their cool activities and accomplishments.
Each night, we stream area sports results and sports news. When athletes commit to colleges or make the conference all-star team, we report on it.
Each week, we also run a comprehensive education section online in addition to our print section, with school lunch menus and system notes.
We also launch discussion on the blogs about issues of importance to our children. Join in the community conversation.
5. Our friends' happiness. We all want the best for our friends. Thousands of them are connected through ThePilot.com. Through photo galleries, weddings -- now online -- and all the different subsections, keep up with your friends in Moore County and their stories at all times.
We also keep the obituaries section constantly updated.
Think of the Web site as your most comprehensive phone tree.
6. At the end of the day, we want to have fun. We like movies (we have a blog devoted to them), sports (two blogs and a Carolina Panthers podcast) and music (a podcast on local acts and several regular podcasts).
In between all that information, schedule in some entertainment, on us.
When I look back on being a kid, I realize that I haven't changed all that much. I still dream big, I still want what I want and I'd still ride that Huffy.
We big kids in the newspaper business don't have all the answers, but we have big dreams. Help us realize them.
Ryan Tuck is The Pilot's Online Editor. Contact him at 693-2484 or by e-mail at ryan@thepilot. com.
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