National Newspaper Week

“Oct. 1-7 is being celebrated by daily, weekly and monthly newspapers nationwide as National Newspaper Week. In a world being taken over by dot coms, where Web surfers can find whatever they’re looking for at the touch of a button, there is still a need for the four coms that newspapers provide at the turn of a wrist:CommunicationCommentCommerceCommunityNational Newspaper Week celebrates communities–delivering to them news that will help them make decisions, provoke a thought, and entertain them.A newspaper staff is dedicated to explaining the complex to its readers: from the provisions of a bond about to be passed, to the multi-levels of some governmental program to be implemented within the community.From front page to back, readers find out what the most pressing news items for the day are locally, what’s happening nationally and internationally, and what’s available for entertainment: from finding out what the daily horoscope is and what’s playing at the theatre, to game scores of favorite sports teams. A lot of that information is accompanied by pictures taken by photographers dedicated to capturing moments readers missed. A newspaper doesn’t just tell its community members what’s going on, it gives the community the opportunity to talk back!Readers can use the newspaper as a sounding board-objecting to or praising whatever comes to mind for them to make comments on–through a letter written to the editor.And a newspaper isn’t just editorial content. There are also display and classified advertisements–another way for the community to tell readers where the shopping bargains are, where a new business is located, where an old business has relocated to. The possibilities through advertising are endless. The first newspaper was published over 310 years ago, in 1690, and the lives of millions of people have been captured in ink ever since. Whether to report the tragedy or the triumph of a few, newspapers have been there to capture the moment and share it with many.The Tacoma Daily Index, published as the county’s legal newspaper since 1890, is not a typical newspaper. Within its pages classified and display advertising will not be found, nor will sports news and entertainment.What readers find inside instead is a treasure of information–from what new businesses are opening, whose divorces are taking place, who is getting a name change, what’s happening in Superior Court, what properties are up for sale, who is asking for a building permit, and even who went bankrupt. Wrapped around all that information is a cornucopia of news–a front page dedicated to construction, legal, business, and technology stories.The Tacoma Daily Index will celebrate this special week because freedom of the press, a constitutional right, allows us to. It is a right worth celebrating. “