Welcome to 2020. For me, it’s more than a number. It’s a milestone. For the past decade — with the stalwart support and encouragement of readers and advertisers — we have been building a community news organization that now covers a combined population of 100,000 in Edmonds, Lynnwood and Mountlake Terrace.
Yet, many times I still feel like I’m in a one-sided relationship.
During the past decade, news organizations of all sizes — from the Guardian to the New York Times to The Seattle Times — realized that there weren’t enough advertising dollars to keep them solvent, and so they began an aggressive campaign for readers’ financial support. You have heard this from me, as well. It costs money to provide good journalism. The news may appear in your Facebook feed for free, but it isn’t free to write or photograph or edit or publish it.
I am grateful for our advertisers. They help keep us afloat financially. I am also thankful to the 1,000 or so readers who have been either regular and one-time financial supporters over the past decade.
But that leaves many thousands of people who read us regularly, but still haven’t given us a cent.
So for me, the 2020s will be the decade of demanding support. And I am using the word “demand” intentionally. Your financial support is imperative. It’s not optional. It’s not a “nice thing” to do. It must be done to ensure we are here when 2030 rolls around.
The next 10 years will bring many changes to our region. In addition to population growth that we are already experiencing, light rail will arrive in South Snohomish County in just four years. Our local cities are already preparing to accommodate these developments.
Count on us to be your eyes and ears as these changes unfold. We’ll report on city council and school board meetings. We’ll photograph open houses, ribbon cuttings and grand openings. We’ll provide robust coverage of local elections, high school sports, the arts and restaurants.
We will also continue to give you a forum to express your opinions, air your grievances and offer your compliments.
It’s our commitment to you.
Now it’s your turn.
Happy New Year.