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News industry is alive, well

It is time for newspapers and their staffs to tell the other side of the story regarding our industry.

This past week, we read about the decline of newspaper circulation in most of the major markets across the country. But what we didn't

read about is the readership increase that has taken place in other parts of the country in our print products and the expansion of our Web sites.

In the Red Wing area, 75 percent of adults read our printed product or our newspaper Web sites. This percentage is typical of all newspaper markets Forum Communications Co. serves.

We as a communication company feel it is time to speak out and give positive information of our industry to our readers.

No one delivers local news better than your daily and weekly newspapers. We, as an industry, understand the need to deliver the news to different demographics by various delivery methods, and we do that well.

We have developed Web sites for each of our markets to serve our online readers as well as our advertisers. Our Web sites, which include our online advertising products, delivered over 23 million page views in April 2008, with over 5.2 million visits.

The Red Wing Republican Eagle's Web site had more than 300,000 page views. We have averaged nearly 23,000 unique visitors each month to date in 2008.

Our industry is alive and well and still considered the No. 1 means of delivering information to the people in our communities. Today, we do a better job than ever of delivering the news and advertising, because we can bring it immediately to our Web sites.

This is what is happening in our market, and I'm sure there are other positive stories to be told by other newspaper companies across the country.

We are not all in a large metro market and, the fact is, the community newspaper business is still strong and vibrant.

Forum Communications owns 36 newspapers in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin, including the Red Wing Republican Eagle.