13 March 2008

Editors Share Interaction Best Practice

A group of regional press editors recently shared some of their initiatives aiming to improve online interaction with readers.

The ‘show and tell’ session at a Best Practice conference in the US saw local news editors reveal some of their projects to make opinion and editorial sections relevant in the digital age, according to Online Journalism Review.

For example, the Kansas City Star launched an Unfettered Letters page where correspondence submitted to the print edition is put online in the form of blog posts where readers can make comments.

The Charlotte Observer aims to engage readers with its You Write the Caption blog where users supply the words to best suit the picture provided each Monday by its professional cartoonist.

And the Portland Oregonian has created a cohort of reader bloggers after a trial process which saw successful applicants first produce one op-ed piece per week for three months.

The OJR states: “Those who have shown their ability to write professionally and meet deadlines have earned the right to blog directly to the Oregonian, unsupervised and unedited.”

In addition, the newspaper has carried out video interviews with each of its so-called community writers so readers can get an idea of who they are and put a face to the blog.

Further information on the conference, entitled Best Practices: Editorial and Commentary in Cyberspace, is available to view here.

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