Post Independent Web site steps up its features |

Post Independent Web site steps up its features

The Internet is fun, albeit a tad creepy and X-rated at times, but we wouldn’t be the mega-informed society we are today if it weren’t for Al Gore’s genius invention.Actually, Gore claimed he invented the Internet, even though the U.S. Defense Department spearheaded the project in the late ’60s when he was a newbie in the Army. Nearly 40 years later, today’s World Wide Web allows users to read late-breaking news headlines, research term papers, shop for anything and everything, communicate through blog sites, and seek out entertainment – as far-reaching as that seems to be these days.I bet most people don’t know there is a Web site dedicated solely to one man’s collection of airline vomit bags. Or, that a home page exists that shows goats faint too, just like people. Stepping away from the computer can be hard, I know.Luckily for our readers, the Post Independent takes the Web quite a bit more seriously by providing readers with the latest news headlines and a public forum for readers to comment on story content and community issues. One successful feature of is the revamped online poll question that accepts reader comments. Especially with the controversy surrounding District Attorney Colleen Truden, users have utilized the commenting feature on both the online poll questions and news stories. Readers can reply anonymously and voice their opinions, whether positive or negative. The feedback is great for reporters, because they want to know what readers want to know.Readers can remain up-to-date on news headlines, including Associated Press stories, with our breaking news and midday update features. If a breaking news story happens, we can publish the information immediately. Every afternoon, the midday update section of the site previews the next day’s headlines.Not all content on the PI’s Web site is serious. The successful Cute Pet Contest garnered more than 300 entries that were published in the paper and online. People voted for the winner via the Web site, much like they can do for the cool tattoo contest. See the tattoos via the photo gallery link on our site and vote today.For readers who want to participate in our “Meet the Neighbors” features, they can go online and complete a form and submit a photo. We think this is a great way for community members to learn more about one another via the paper.We also have links to our special sections, such as the recently published Health Guide and our well-received series on the Latino community in the Roaring Fork Valley. Many of our stories provide links to related articles at the bottom of the page.A new real estate section scheduled to launch by the end of May is one feature that will help home buyers and home sellers in their mission to buy or sell. The section will include local listings, real estate advice and information about the community.The PI staff is excited to offer improvements to our Web site in hopes that readers will interact more with the paper. We want to know what people think and the Web can help that happen faster. So go online and visit today to let those voices be heard. We’ll be waiting.April E. Clark is the PI’s Web editor and a staff reporter. She would like to share some of the weird sites discovered while researching this column, but this is a family paper.

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