Editor Column: Look for The Telegram in your mailbox, not your driveway
Judging by the phone calls, many of you were surprised last Thursday when The Citizen Telegram failed to show up at your home. Much of my morning that day was spent answering those phone calls and doing my best to offer an explanation.
For those who did not receive a letter in the mail and chose not to call me directly, I thought I’d explain what happened.
Last Tuesday, Jan. 26, I received word that we would be dropping home delivery. The reason, our circulation director explained, was due to a serious car accident that our longtime carrier was in. Details were scarce, but it sounded pretty bad.
Consequently, finding a new and reliable carrier proved challenging (perhaps a testament to our longtime carrier). For this reason, the circulation director informed me that he was in the process of switching all accounts to mail delivery.
The end result: All subscribers would get their paper in the mail on Friday, rather than Thursday. However, it also brings more certainty — barring any issues with the U.S. Post Office — that your paper will arrive each week.
At the time, we thought the change would likely happen the following week, not the same week. Regardless, there was insufficient time to get a message into last week’s paper, and it seemed like a futile exercise.
Notices were mailed out Tuesday, the same day I learned about the switch, with the hope that our readers would receive them by Thursday. If the switch happened a week later, then everyone would theoretically get the notice before the change. If the change happened that week, then a message in the paper would have done little to answer the questions that spurred the series of phone calls. Plus, everyone would likely get the notice before getting the paper anyways.
Something happened, though, as many of you pointed out over the phone — “no newspaper, no notice, what the hell happened?”
The only conclusion the circulation director and I could reach was that the change definitely started that week and some people did not receive the notices on Thursday.
None of you who called were angry once I explained the situation. Morse so, the majority were upset that there was no advance notice of the change. Part of the reason was the timing of the decision, but regardless, I take responsibility for not doing more to try and alert you of the change.
At the same time, I do have to give credit to our circulation director, who pulled of a big last minute project in a relatively smooth fashion. The change will ensure greater consistency with delivery — which is a more complicated racket than I suspect most of us think it is.
Going forward, most of you should be good to go. However, if your mailing address is different than your home address, we need to update your account. To do so, we ask that you contact our circulation director, Jake Marine, either via email email@example.com or via phone 970-384-9148. Jake also is the person to contact if you don’t receive your paper during or after this transition. As with most things, you can contact me as well, but I’m going to pass you along to Jake. A letter to the editor always is an option, as well, if this process has you especially emotional.
Also to aid with the change, I will have a small number of copies of The Citizen Telegram at our office — 111 E. Third St., Suite 217 — on Thursday and copies will still be available in the newspaper boxes around town.
Current subscribers will not notice a difference in cost, while the rates going forward will be straightforward: $25 per year for seniors, $30 for regular in county subscriptions and $40 for out of county subscriptions. As someone who pays about $10 per month just to read stories on the Denver Post website — no print subscription — I’d have to say we’re still a pretty good deal.
Thank you for your continued readership and sticking with us during this transition
Ryan Hoffman is still icing the hand he uses to answer the phone, but do not let that stop you from contacting him at 970-685-2103 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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