Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Good feedback...and now a word from our sponsor.

Thank you for taking part in what is only the beginning of the conversation. It is obvious who I am from the description on this blog, I need not use my name.

The idea behind the CenalMedia blog is to try and give those who want a voice directly to their local media a chance to communicate story ideas in a safe non-threatening venue. Since it is on the web it is open to all. Some good issues have been raised, but as I figured, within one week the blog became a collection of angry "anon" posters who would not have the courage to say the things they do online to a persons face. That's o.k. That's what this is about. But here is the rub. Beginning immediately "traditional" journalists like myself will be challenging their staff to start blogs that begin to engage the online user. After this brief exercise I see the risk and how "off the point" this venue can become.

I don't see us giving up, but I do think anon posts can no longer be allowed and that the posts should have a moderator.

Your local media has been criticized by local blogs and we talk about it to each other. Some of you have insightful feedback and some of us have enjoyed learning from the valid points made. It is important to listen to all sources when looking for ways to improve your craft. But insults do nothing for the idea behind this and other blogs (although they do give us a laugh or two) and they are counter productive.

So here goes, if you have questions about me personally or wish to make a comment please email me directly at If you have story ideas or observations you think need looking into please post your comments, they will be published.


Spanky said...

Hopefully a greater number of our fellow citizens will become involved to a greater extent to the point of actually voting in the next election. Apathy of the electorate is the crux of the matter as reflected in the fact that we get the government that we deserve. If the our local officials appear to pander to special interest, has anyone given thought that 10-15% of registered voters decide what is going to happen? There is your special interest - folk actually concerned enough to vote. Over half of 20-30% participation of registered voters is how that breaks down. Yes, it is past time for the rest of you to wake up and do your civic duty.

Spanky said...

The city is naturally going to be secretive on the matter of a second set of books in regard to employee hospitalization. Of the many COA employees I have engaged in conversation, several have told me that payment of claims for medical expense is a harrowing experience with many going unpaid.
The first time I heard about this was over two years ago and I began listening for indication and clues to the veracity of this revelation. That is why I talk to everyone and pick up shreds of information that form a tattered picture. A second person with the city verified my question about the existance of a second set of books and clarified that the matter had been referred to the State Police for investigation according to procedure and to date there has been no response. If I was to pursue the matter, I would be talking to the police chief and the former mayor first for recorded reaction. Then I would ask everyday city employees to get their story or and indication of nervousness that they had been told to put the lid on.
By the way, I have seen the correspondence on the Hebron matter to the State Police and the DA's office. The only reason I feel safe is because I am armed and can protect myself - not because the aforementioned are diligent in their duties.

4/04/2007 09:03:00 AM

Spanky said...

Is it possible to do a man on the street story about home ownership and the health of neighborhoods and how that translates to the overall health of the community?
I have not compiled any data to support the contention but through observation it appears the single most driver of neighbor hood health is the owner/renter ratio.
Acadian Village is an example of a neighbor hood that gets lumped into what folks would refer to as a blighted area when in reality there appears to be a large percentage of homeowners that inhabit the neighborhood and keep it very neat and presentable. On the other hand, other areas begin to be bought by investors and converted to rental properties. It appears to me that when a threshhold is reached that has renters far outweighing owner-residents, then major decline sets in. Case in point is the area bounded by Monroe, Texas, Rapides and Bolton. Prior to I-49 relocating many residents to the area, the area was stable with moderate priced housing and while not an upscale area, was relatively safe and clean. While on the surface many would apply a racial component to the decline, Acadian Village and other areas are a glaring contradiction that assertion.
It would be interesting to compare voter rolls & participation to homeowner status. My gut feeling is that homeowners are more involved in community affairs as neighborhood events affect their largest personal investment, which is their home. It may be a boring concept to some, but I think home ownership ratios is the strongest factor that holds the key to building a stronger Alexandria.