COLUMN: When bad news is still good news
During the first Business and Industry Appreciation event this past Tuesday hosted by the Mitchel County Economic Development Commission, EDC Director Mickey Duvall said projecting a positive image of the community is vital to successful economic development.
I could not agree more.
One of, if not the main catalyst in properly and successfully doing so is the local newspaper.
Sure, advertisements in magazines and on websites can urge people to come here, but the local newspaper is the mirror that reflects a community’s mood either daily or weekly.
Is it along those lines where I feel even a bad news story in the newspaper can act as a positive reflection of a community. Not only does a front-page story about a murder or some other crime show a commitment to true journalism, it shows that the members of a community expect and value the truth, even when the facts aren’t as positive as we would like. It would be a disservice to our readers and to journalism if we bury a story people need to know about to simply keep up an image. The idea that nothing bad ever happens in a community is not one many people are inclined to believe.
Luckily, we live in a place where the good news far outweighs the bad. If someone stops in Spruce Pine for gas, to eat or to take in the views and reads a News-Journal, I am convinced, even if said paper has a not-so-positive story on the front, he or she will leave with an overall favorable view of this community simply because that’s the community in which we live.
If someone is trying to sell Mitchell County as a great place to live and work, extending your arm and handing them a copy of the Mitchell News-Journal will go a long way in doing so.
Brandon Roberts is publisher and editor of the News-Journal.