Having been in the newspaper business for nearly 15 years at this point, trust me, I would like it if I had some kind of ergonomic chair and secretary, perhaps someone to make my tired ass a cup of coffee if I drank the stuff. But I don’t have any of that; as small-business people, every single one of us at DigBoston does just about everything, from writers who take photographs to photographers who write and editors who vacuum to co-publishers who take the trash out.
Which is one reason that I found myself hanging out on the South Boston waterfront last Friday, waiting for the winners of our Daily Dig Harpoon Octoberfest giveaway (quick shameless plug: If you’re not getting the Daily Dig, you are missing out big time). It’s not merely out of necessity that I perform such tasks, though; over the course of the two hours I waited for people, I had the pleasure of getting to hang with a few readers. In real life! It’s something that we used to do more frequently and that, starting in 2018, we will be doing at least once a month. The steady stream of social media and emails that I volley back and forth with readers is a start, but it’s about time that we open up for even more engagement. In the next couple of weeks, we will also be circulating short surveys and questionnaires that will help guide our reporting moving forward, on everything from hard news to the arts.
As for what this all means relative to content in this issue… for starters, it’s thanks to readers that I have been warming up to the idea of publishing more national and even international stories. Don’t get me wrong, DigBoston has always been, is, and will remain a dedicated local news shop; we are proud to be one of the few outlets in town that recently covered primary elections in multiple municipalities, and moving forward will be ramping up coverage of Somerville, Medford, Malden, Cambridge, and Quincy, for starters. At the same time, the response from readers about pieces we ran out of Washington, DC, and in one case from across the Canadian border has been positive, with several people saying that without the Dig, they wouldn’t have known about things like the Inauguration Day protesters being prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law or the increased risk that Haitian families face under the Trump administration.
On that note, please dig into this year’s mind-boggling Project Censored feature from our friends at Random Lengths News, along with all the other gems we worked so hard to bring you this week.
CHRIS FARAONE, EDITOR IN CHIEF
A Queens, NY native who came to New England in 2004 to earn his MA in journalism at Boston University, Chris Faraone is the editor and co-publisher of DigBoston and a co-founder of the Boston Institute for Nonprofit Journalism. He has published several books including 99 Nights with the 99 Percent, and has written liner notes for hip-hop gods including Cypress Hill, Pete Rock, Nas, and various members of the Wu-Tang Clan.