Practically Speaking

Kyle and her husband moved to Brookfield in 1986. She became active in local politics and started blogging in 2004. Her focus is primarily on local issues but often includes state and national topics, too. Kyle looks at things from the taxpayers' perspective in a creative, yet down to earth way, addressing them from a practical point of view.

Bloggers of the world unite (OK, of Metro Milwaukee)

Blogging, Just for fun!

Last night about 40 of my fellow MyCommunityNOW bloggers and I met at the Journal Sentinel building downtown for a bloggers' meeting. Although I have been blogging on BrookfieldNOW since Feb. of 2007, this was my first meeting. 

Various Journal Sentinel staff told us about some coming changes at the paper. For one, a new platform is coming to better manage the MyCommunityNOW websites and JSOnline. They said they are implementing the million dollar system sometime in Oct., so that they can better be at the forefront of breaking news.

JSOnline will include more photos with the story titles. They will incorporate a better search component (Yippee) and a shorter load time. 

The MyCommunityNOW blogging software will be improved too. (Coming sometime in Oct. or Nov.) Surprisingly, they told us that about 80% of the traffic on NOW sites is blog generated! In other words, most people come to the various NOW websites to read the blogs. 

One change was met with audible groans and complaints, however: There will be no view counter in the new platform! That might seem trivial to you, but as the blogger next to me stated, that is why we write. (Said in a tongue in cheek manner, but there was a grain of truth to her statement, given the crowd's reaction.)

At this news, there was a twitter of mock mutiny in the audience. Ego aside, view count totals, although not accurate, at least provide a number (for comparison purposes) which posts generate the most interest. In other words, if I post something on crab grass control and it only gets 100 some views, I would know that subject is not of as much interest as 4K at 1,000s of views. The view count helps the writer to determine interest levels.

Once the shock wore off, the staffers quickly explained they would try to get a view count installed a.s.a.p.

I asked after the presentation if picture posting would become easier. The tech. said, yes, and that is good news indeed. I like to post pictures, but it is always a dicey, time consuming process at best (for me).

After the meeting, we were invited to tour the newsroom. We saw some writers, copy proof readers, and editors in action.




Mark Maley, the NOW Online Editor (in red shirt) is pictured showing us how the front page is being set up for today.

(They monitor 6 news feeds here. We saw that the House energy bill passed on C-Span.)



When we walked between the Journal building and Sentinel building, there was this old mural painted on the wall, showing progress in the news business. The "high tech" image on the modern end of the time line maybe is the Linotype machine?

It was a pleasant enough evening. Wish it would have been more geared to how to, but that will come once they change systems.

In any event, I came away with a new coffee mug and 2 tickets to the zoo. Who says this job pays nothing! :)


Brookfield District 7 Info meeting, Wed., Sept. 24, 2-3 or 6:30-7:30pm

Please, comment content should relate to the subject of the post. Although I try to respond to many, do not interpret my lack of a response as agreement.



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