Here we go

by Michael Tilley ([email protected]) 16 views 

Dear Kind Readers:

We’re doing this new thing with The City Wire. New look. New people. Not all new people. You’ll continue to have to put up with me. For some of you, that’s a guilty pleasure.

“You’re ‘bout the dumbest person on the Internet,” I’ve been told directly, “but I keep coming back to see what dumb thing you’ll say next.”

Fine with me. Perfect, really. You coming back equals traffic. Traffic is the lifeblood of a website. I’ll keep saying dumb things to keep the blood flowing.

Also flowing is initial feedback on our new look. Comments range from the generous to the brutal. We’ve heard from folks who praise the clean look, and those who question our cluttered look — can’t please ‘em all. We’ve carefully considered all comments, and made several substantive changes as a result.

The real point of this letter to you is to note we’ll be pushing tremendously more new content about the world around you. Before expounding upon that real point, let’s posit a bit of history for those possibly new to this enterprise.

The City Wire, launched in November 2008, is a news website that now covers business, politics and culture in the Fort Smith and Northwest Arkansas regions. News on The City Wire also includes statewide business and political news. More than 685,000 visited the website between Nov. 1, 2008 and Dec. 30, 2011. They logged more than 4.456 million pageviews.

We say with conviction that The City Wire cuts through the clutter of bank robberies, house fires and meth busts to deliver timely, detailed and accurate business, political and arts & entertainment news. Even more to the point, The City Wire delivers today’s news now, and tomorrow’s headlines today.

Back to the thing about delivering more content about the world around you.

The ongoing success of The City Wire is fueled by a simple formula: Work hard to deliver the important business, political and cultural news as soon as possible. Content is King. To be sure, we reach a smaller segment of the demographic, but it’s typically the decision-making (in business and government) demographic of the communities we cover and serve.

Which is to say there are several things about your community and the world we don’t cover. Don’t care to cover, frankly. If your world needs updates on the Kardashian marriages or the latest from Oprah or updates on a local bank robbery or local house fire, well, The City Wire ain’t for you.

The story about the bank robbery will have little impact on your community a few years from now. Manufacturing and bank policies at the state and national levels, while not near as flashy as the bank robbery or the guy who rescued puppies from a house fire, will have a short- and long-term impact on your regional economy.

It’s not all higher-order business and political stuff. Unique and frequent coverage of non-profit events and arts & entertainment venues is another factor in our ongoing success. We will boost arts & entertainment coverage in Fort Smith and Northwest Arkansas — with a goal of mixing edgy, with informative; mixing succinct with revealing.

Also, we have bold plans to improve our already unique content-partner relationships with KFSM 5 News, Little Rock-based Talk Business and Fayetteville-based KUAF 91.3 FM. Stay tuned.

So, Kind Reader, please know our new look, new people and new technology remains geared toward the old-school journalism concept of helping you be more aware of the world around you.

Many months ago a person of some influence in Northwest Arkansas asked when The City Wire “would bring its brand of journalism” to the area.

Here it is, and it comes with the ability to also expand what we do in the Fort Smith area and statewide.

We trust you’ll continue to be Kind, and Patient, Readers.

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