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Same Great Things You Expect from High Country Press, Just Different Platform HCPress.com is designed by Big Boom Design, an Asheville-based web-design and internet-consulting firm. The owner, Boomer Sassman, is an ASU graduate responsible for many of the websites based in the High Country. Sassman says of the website, “I would say to build a website of the magnitude like you guys have, it opens the door for a very dynamic and fluid website browsing experience. By having this type of site, it allows the user to really take ownership of the navigation.” Big Boom Design is still at work developing the site. shift in the newspaper world going digital at about the turn of the millennium when she worked for The Virginian-Pilot. Now she teaches students who are eager to be cub reporters in the digital age. “This is an exciting time to be in journalism, [but] you have to be flexible,” Holman said. “[The newspaper industry] is constantly changing.”

Newspapers – A Dying Breed Of course, everybody loves to read a hard-copy, but as Bob Dylan sung many years ago, “The Times They Are a Changing.” In the past 20 years, newspaper circulation has steadily declined, aggravated by the emergence of the internet and other mediums competing for readers’ attention. According to a study released early this year by LinkedIn and the Council of Economic Advisors, newspapers were the fasted-shrinking U.S. Industry from 2007 to 2011. But guess what industry is the fastest growing? Online publishing. (Though it’s not a newspaper, the current state of Encyclopedia Britannica, for instance, shows the plight of the traditional publishing industry; after 200 years of publishing, it finally succumbed to the

Ken Ketchie stands with his computer a few days before the February 29th launch of www.HCPress.com, showing off the look of the new website. Photo by Bob Caldwell

pressures of the digital age, releasing a statement in March declaring that the encyclopedia has solely gone digital.) The concept for the HCPress.com is the same as it was for High Country Press; we are still purveyors of information – just without the ink and paper. A while back Newsweek ran an essay series entitled “The Decade of Destruction.” The author, Daniel Lyons wrote that newspapers were blind to the rise of the web, blind to the biggest change that would affect its industry. “They thought their business was about putting ink onto paper and then physically distributing those stacks of paper with fleets of trucks and delivery people. Papers were slow to move to the Web. For a while they just sort of shuffled around, hoping it would go away,” Lyons wrote. “Watching newspapers go out of business because of the Internet is like watching dairies going out of business because customers started wanting their milk in paper cartons instead of glass bottles.”

A Harmony of Pixels For the HCPress.com, we no longer put ink onto paper each Thursday. Now,

we are a harmony of pixels everyday. HCPress.com will still be the community news source that readers expect and have grown to love. But now, we aren’t limited by space or the time constraints of a weekly newspaper. We will still cover the breaking news, elections, education, government, the nightlife scene and other upcoming events, such as festivals, nonprofit happenings and public forums. We’ve also added to our coverage weekly crime reports and obituaries, a sports page and more. HCPress.com has unlimited space for Letters to the Editor and information and photos from all of the local art galleries, businesses and organizations. We offer a plethora of videos, photo galleries and other digital tools that were impossible in print. “It’s about presentation and trying to keep that feel of a community newspaper,” Ketchie said. “It’s still community centered; but it’s just on a different platform now.” No longer will news and events be old by the time you flip through the pages of a newspaper. When our weekly-edition High Country Press became available on Thursdays, some of our coverage was already old news. Now because our webpaMay 2012

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May Magazine 2012  

May Magazine 2012

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