No Power, No Problem: Louisiana Paper Turns to Web Full-Time

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Without power following Hurricane Rita’s hit on the southwestern Louisiana coast, The American Press of Lake Charles has gone to the Internet fulltime.

Editor Brett Downer said Monday that reporters stationed in the newspaper’s DeRidder bureau to the north — also without power — are filing stories to the newspaper’s Web site off laptop computers fired by car batteries.

Operating on a 24-hour basis, Downer said editors are being stationed in Lafayette and DeRidder to handle the Web site.

Photographers, who set up a generator-fired computer in Lake Charles, are getting photos to the site by e-mailing them first to The American Press’ sister newspaper, The Daily News-Sun in Hobbs, N.M., Downer said.

Downer also said readers have been given a blog at www.americanpress.blogspot.com.

Printed editions of The American Press, which has a daily circulation of about 40,000, have been suspended. Also, the newspaper’s regular Web site, which reproduces an entire edition, is down.

“We are without power and we are told we will be at least a week without power,” Downer said.

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