In recent years, The Salt Lake Tribune, like all other respected newspapers, has given its readers several options for reading the paper: the traditional hard copy, an online facsimile, or an online HTML version. More and more readers are moving to one of the online versions. I am one of them.
One huge feature of the online HTML version has been the opportunity for readers to interact with articles by posting comments. I find that oftentimes these reader comments are more interesting and enlightening than the story or editorial they are responding to. This is especially true of Public Forum letters, which sometimes generate more than a hundred reader comments.
Sadly, in recent months The Tribune has debilitated such interactivity. While Public Forum letters are printed promptly in the hard copy and facsimile editions of the paper, in the interactive HTML version they are delayed by days, or not printed at all.
Such mismanagement of such a popular feature is puzzling since it goes against modern-day journalism’s professed desire to be more engaged with readers. At a time when newspapers are struggling to keep their readership, this undermining of the Public Forum does not help.
Tom Huckin, Salt Lake City