Spreading news however possible

Published 10:30 pm Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Chilton County school children didn’t get their wish at the beginning of the week.

Playing in ice doesn’t carry the same appeal as frolicking around in the snow, but schools—and most businesses—were closed Monday because of a winter storm that dumped sleet and freezing rain on most of the north half of Alabama.

As a newspaper, it’s important for us here at The Clanton Advertiser to keep our readers informed when decisions are made about school closings or delays. This week’s storm highlighted how we are now able to do that in a different and more efficient manner.

Because our office was closed Monday, Tuesday’s newspaper was completed early, before School Superintendent Dave Hayden had made a decision about closing school on Monday.

There was a time when that would have meant the Advertiser could not have informed our readers when the decision was made, on Sunday, but this is definitely a different world we live in.

We uploaded a story about the decision to our website, clantonadvertiser.com, while also sending a breaking news email to our extensive list of contacts, linking recipients to our news site.

We also Tweeted the headline and posted the news to our Facebook page, which is followed by close to 2,000 people.

Facebook provided a forum for residents to share their concerns about schools and roads, and we swiftly answered those concerns to the best of our ability.

We’re proud to be Chilton County’s newspaper, but we hope our readers think of us as so much more.