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A big change, almost a year on: Is it working?

Media companies are under a lot of pressure in this moment, especially any of those that print on paper, even if in conjunction with online publications. The media is too often now dismissed by the nation’s leaders, who should understand the crucial role the Fourth Estate plays in the health of democracy. The challenges make it hard for any large or small media company to survive, and many across the country have not. 

But as a local and locally owned community journalism company, The Lakeville Journal Company, which publishes what you are reading, considers itself fortunate in many ways. Those who live in the largely rural area in which we operate tend to make their own judgments about things, often exhibiting an independent and thoughtful streak. That, along with a very supportive and local ownership, is what has helped us continue to create weekly newspapers, as well as Compass Arts and Entertainment, TriCorner Real Estate and numerous special sections, for decades with wide community support.

The only publication the company produced over recent years that had difficulty finding support through advertising and circulation in its own communities was The Winsted Journal. And last August, after a month’s advance notice to its communities and more than 20 years of trying to make it work as a separate entity, the company rolled The Winsted Journal into The Lakeville Journal, which took on the towns in that coverage area, primarily Winsted, Norfolk, Colebrook and Barkhamsted.

The Winsted Journal was begun in 1996 by The Lakeville Journal Company’s current ownership group (which purchased the company in 1995 from Robert Hatch). The action of rolling The Winsted Journal into The Lakeville Journal was taken to create a more stable long-term platform on which to continue to build our other publications, which are continuing to attract readers and advertisers and to support themselves. 

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So, now is the time to ask our readers: Do you like this new approach? For all our readers across the northwest Connecticut region, and all those outside the region as well, do you find that The Lakeville Journal is fulfilling its mission of reporting the news of our communities accurately and fairly, fostering democracy and an atmosphere of open communication? 

Please let us know your thoughts through emails to publisher@lakevillejournal.com, with “Big Change” in the subject line; or via the post office to The Lakeville Journal, P.O. Box 1688, Lakeville, CT  06039, att: Janet Manko, publisher and editor in chief. We have heard anecdotal reactions, but would greatly appreciate our readers’ thoughtful feedback at this stage in our experiment.    

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The Lakeville Journal Company will continue to cover its communities vigorously and with a dedication that comes from a long history and an awareness of and caring for the past and present of the region. We hope also to give insight into what the future will hold with news of all that matters to those who love the far-flung small towns in the Lakeville Journal and Millerton News coverage areas.  

Thank you for reading The Lakeville Journal. Your support helps keep local community journalism alive.