The Vindicator shares special section idea

Casey Stinnett, editor of The Vindicator in Liberty, shared a successful special section idea.
When a local nursing home asked for help publicizing its request for donations of large print puzzles and games to help keep residents occupied during the pandemic, the Vindicator staff saw an opportunity to fill that need with a special section in the newspaper.

Coronavirus issues affecting publications

Recap: I'm summarizing questions to the NNA Postal Hotline of interest to members.
The identity of the questioner and location is withheld.

Q:  I have a question about our periodical permit. All of our advertisers have pulled their ads until at least the first of May. We cannot make it as a small newspaper without these major advertisers. If we take a short recess from publishing for about 3-4 weeks, will we lose our permit? What do we need to do in order to do this? This is crucial for us to stay in business.

Coronavirus underscores the breadth of business reporting

The coronavirus pandemic is dominating headlines, generating stories on issues touching nearly every aspect of lives.

Reports addressing the health and safety of citizens are obviously center stage. At the same time, the pandemic has spawned a range of stories focusing on our worksites – the places we earn a paycheck as employees and purchase products and services as consumers. Business lockdowns and restrictions have redefined commerce and reshaped daily routines.

By Jim Pumarlo, community newspaper consultant

Sunshine Week: Fighting a virus with truth and transparency

As the scope and threat of the coronavirus pandemic becomes clear, people all over the world hunger for two things: an effective vaccine and truthful information about the disease.
The former may be more than a year away, but the latter is critical to stemming the pandemic in the meantime.

By Ken Paulson, director, Free Speech Center, Middle Tennessee State University

Previews of new USPS programs, procedures

A big part of NNA’s participation in the Mailers Technical Advisory Committee (MTAC) is getting a preview of new programs and procedures proposed by the Postal Service. The theory is that the representatives from the mailing industry will provide feedback to the Postal Service on the workability of these changes, and we do see where sometimes USPS modifies a proposal based on comments.
Some of the items of interest to NNA members from the most recent MTAC meeting in late January follow.

National Newspaper Association

Bebo the Bull: Lessons from the senior citizen aisle

Right now, I’m sure the most relevant topic in all of our lives and businesses is dealing with the coronavirus, COVID-19.
But as they say, laughter is the best medicine, so I hope my column can give everyone a chuckle or at least a little smile to brighten their day.
Turning old is inevitable, we all know that! 
When we are teenagers we can’t wait to turn 18, then it’s 21, and from that point on, most of us dread getting a year older.
Another aspect when you’re young is you look forward to going to dances.

Sunshine Week: Sun shining brighter in Texas

It’s Sunshine Week in America, and thanks to the leadership of key legislators, the sun shines brighter in Texas than it did a year ago. 
The 2019 legislative session brought reforms to restore muscle to transparency laws that were pounded to mush by appeals court rulings in recent years. More on that in a bit. 

Open government seminar set April 8

SAN ANTONIO – Transparency experts will gather Wednesday, April 8, in San Antonio for a seminar offering training in the Texas Public Information Act and the Texas Open Meetings Act.
The Open Government Seminar is part of a series of regional educational sessions the non-profit Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas is hosting this year in cooperation with the Texas Attorney General’s Office. 
It is open to all who are interested, including community activists, journalists, attorneys, government employees and the general public.