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November 13, 2019
 

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As the word gets around Ada Icon continues to grow with viewers and advertisers

By Monty Siekerman

I am impressed with the reach and effectiveness of the Ada Icon. An online newspaper has many advantages over print media. Having spent most of my career in journalism, I see the great possibilities the new technology has.

In just over a year's time, the Ada Icon has provided the community with immediate news, such as weather alerts, school closings and road conditions.

Beyond immediacy, the Icon has the ability to provide more coverage of local events because it is not limited by space, which in newspapers is determine by the amount of ads sold.

For example, the Icon featured several craft people, with photos, at a pre-valentines event sponsored by Health Professionals. This much coverage of local people at a local event can't and doesn't happen in today's print media.

The Icon's reach and viewership is outstanding. A computer program tells us how many people are on the Icon at the moment and where in the world they are located. The Icon's reach is both near and far. But don't worry about your personal data...we can't identify your individual computer, nor would we want to.

Although rather new, the Ada Icon is effective in communicating what readers want to know. Hundreds view the Icon daily, not only for news but also for classifieds, even local restaurant menus.

No longer do Adaites need to wait for days to see articles or photos of events, such as the first public event at the new United Methodist Church. A picture is taken, caption written, a computer bottom is pushed...story ready for inclusion.

Today, young people get their news via computer, especially social media sites. Already, the Ada Icon site has over 700 Facebook "friends" and is growing rapidly. We are working with college-age students to expand our presence onto other social media sites to reach more readers rapidly in the way they get their news and information.

It is gratifying to hear a college student reply "Oh, yes," when asked if he knew about the Ada Icon. High school students view us, as well.  Even old people, like me, who aren't too computer savvy, read the Icon. It serves the local community, no matter the age of the resident.

One last thought: Fred Steiner's success with this venture is obvious with not only the large number of people who go to the site daily, but also by the number of ads he sells.

Advertisers want placed on the Icon pages because their ads are seen by many. And the price is reasonable. Local businesses, who normally spend nothing on ads, are now onboard.

I am getting on my high horse in another column: will express my opinion about print media shooting themselves in the foot when they try to extract money from their viewers by charging for news. As a news hound for many years, this action grates on my nerves and is frustrating when searching for information. More on that later.

A disclaimer: This columnist, reporter, photographer gets no pay for work on this online effort, so my remarks here have nothing to do with salary but everything to do with promoting a valuable, local communication tool.

However, I do get food...and for a non-chef, that's important. I ate my way through Valentines, sweets at the library bake-off and candy/cookies at Liberty National Bank.
montysiekerman60@gmail.com