As I sit here writing this editorial on what would have been my dad’s 86th birthday, I have been thinking about the lessons he taught me — both in words and actions. I believe one of the most valuable was his unwavering commitment to whatever he did. Maybe that's why I have difficulty dealing with people or systems that let me down — or don't fulfill their obligations. Of course, I'm also not perfect; I’m a dedicated work in progress. But the value of dedication and fulfilling commitments rings dearly in my life.
This month, our feature articles both highlight commitment and dedication — or its lack. In “Under new management,” the local owners who have taken over former Gannett-owned newspapers have shown in a very short time their immense dedication and commitment to their local communities. In a time of challenge for local news media, this is a story that will encourage even the most cynical among us.
Our second feature looks at the other end of the commitment continuum. Our right to a free press is fundamental to our citizenship. Our founders, in 1789, believed so strongly in this right, they wrote it into the First Amendment to our Constitution. Yet, you'll see in "Censorship by PIO" that public information officers constantly breach this right in government agencies at all levels when they block reporters' access to sources and information. It is unconstitutional and, quite frankly, illegal, but it is part of everyday life for reporters working to access government information.
Our pages are filled this month with news media staff who have dedicated their time and effort to this business. From relaunches of news sites to journalist tools to industry innovations, examples of devotion to this industry abound. And, of course, our publisher (and my husband) Mike Blinder is making a valuable statement about the endless tribalism in news media outlets.
Everyone on the E&P staff takes our commitment to you, our readers and advertisers, very seriously. You are the reason we come to work every day. Our dedication to you comes from the knowledge that you endeavor alongside us to provide news to your community with truth, fairness and excellence — often with the odds stacked against you. Your stories inspire us.
Mike and I continue to invite your comments — good and bad. We can only fulfill our duty with your honest feedback. Thank you for making this commitment with us.
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