It’s not malice
March 8, 2019
by Ivan Raconteur

There are times when we make mistakes, and when we do, it probably bothers us more than the people who are affected.

At the newspaper, we touch a lot of different pieces of information every week.

Some people don’t realize it, and maybe that’s natural. People tend to see only the piece that’s important to them.

To us, all of them are important.

This goes far beyond making sure the stories our staffers write are fair, balanced, and accurate.

We also work to make sure that items submitted for the community or school pages are complete.

We appreciate and depend on these submitted items, but it is not uncommon for us to receive photos in which the people are not identified, or the number of names doesn’t match the people in the photo.

It might take several exchanges back and forth before we get complete information.

We work hard to ensure that we have information about local events that are important to our readers, but we often get things that don’t include the time, or the place, or the cost, or some other pertinent information.

When that happens, it is our job to follow up and make sure that by the time the paper goes to press, all those questions have been answered.

We often receive submitted pieces in which information is wrong or names are misspelled, and we work hard to make sure these things are right before they are published.

We put a lot of effort into our award-winning classified advertising section, and our staff strives to make sure those listings are complete and correct.

We don’t charge for obituaries. We publish these as a service to our readers. And even when we get four or five revisions, we make every effort to get the details correct in the version we publish, because we know these are important to the people we serve.

In addition to our newspaper products, we have special publications such as Senior Connections and Farm Horizons.

We also publish community guidebooks for the cities we serve.

We touch many different pieces of information, and sometimes we make mistakes. But when we do, don’t ever assume it is because we don’t care, or because we are maliciously trying to mistreat anyone.

We go out of our way to make sure everyone is included.

When it comes to things like business directories, our goal is to ensure that every local business is included, even those who do not do business with us, or who directly compete with us.

We are a small, locally-owned business, and we understand the importance of keeping other local businesses in our communities.

Not only would it be against our philosophy to target other local companies, it wouldn’t be good business.

We spend more time and effort trying to get things right than most people will ever see.

Yes, there are times we make mistakes. We did so just recently when we inadvertently omitted a name from the free business directory in the Lester Prairie community guidebook.

But don’t ever assume it is out of malice.

That simply is not who we are, and that is not something we would ever do.

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