One year ago today, Ed McKeon sat down at his computer and tapped out a post on the power of the people to create their own press, unleashing the Middletown Eye upon the world.
One year later, it adds up to 93,814 visits, 1236 articles, and a current average of 507 times a day that somebody clicks on the Middletown Eye.
Anyone who knows me has heard me go on about how much I love the Eye. It has restored a level of fun to living in Middletown that was lost around the time that Ebben Flow left the Middletown Press and moved to Massachusetts. I like living in a place where:
1. People keep up on the news, and
2. There’s news to keep up on.
Granted, I don’t always like the news itself, but you can’t always get what you want.
Here’s a reprint of Ed’s original post.
Welcome to the Middletown Eye.
Increasingly local media is failing the municipalities and communities they cover. Corporate ownership has drained valuable dollars from the local papers, leaving them to scramble for coverage. It's not through any fault of reporters, it's through lack of reporters because the corporate parent believes more in advertising than editorial content. No single reporter can be at any one meeting.
Think of Middletown. Forty-two square miles. An active Police Department. Municipal meetings nearly every night. Cultural performances galore. Sports at many amateur levels. There's no way that even a handful of reporters can do the town justice.
But what if we become the reporters - those of us who go to the meetings, and concerts, ballgames and social events. With a digital camera, an audio recorder and a laptop, we might be able to do a far better job than the newspapers ever could.
So that's the idea. A blog devoted to our town, and written by its residents. Imagine what might happen if there were a set of Middletown eyes at every significant (and maybe insignificant) event.
Of course, we need volunteer correspondents. More on that in a later post. For now, think about what you would have liked the newspaper to report at the PTA meeting, and then consider how you could write it to get the most important points made.
Consider it your Eye, and your point of view.