Newest feature not in black and white

David Stevens — From the editor’s desk

The Clovis News Journal has added two new features, but you won’t find them in the pages of our newspaper.
They’re on our Internet Web site.
Pull up our site — — and on the left side you’ll see a section called “Web Exclusives.” Below that heading are “Curtis Shelburne’s religion column” and “Scott Jones’ video reviews.”
Shelburne is a Church of Christ minister who lives in Muleshoe. He is an engaging storyteller whose columns also appear in the Muleshoe Journal. His columns are posted on Sundays.
Jones is a Clovis resident who enjoys movies so much he works in a video store. His reviews focus on the watchability of a movie rather than the acting and cinematography. They are posted on Thursdays.
Both writers’ e-mail addresses will be included so you can tell them what you think about their work.
We have more ideas for “Web Exclusives,” too. And by the end of the year we hope to regularly post Associated Press stories on our site.
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Last week’s column on why we sometimes withhold names of criminal suspects produced two notes from readers.
Tommy Richbourg wrote: “Where is the consistency? Some cases you choose to print suspects’ names, others you don’t. As you stated, this information is public record. It is also news that is important to our community, and should be printed.”
The other response came from Pete Soots of Clovis. This is what he wrote, in part:
“There is no need to put the name in until they are pronounced guilty and sentenced. There could be some times when the name should be told, but in reading all the articles on crimes you publish I have yet to see one that I would say, ‘Hey, I am being deprived of necessary information.’ It could also make a difference as to whether the person would get a fair trial.”
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The Clovis News Journal last month received the New Mexico Press Association’s “General Excellence” award for small daily newspapers.
Earlier this year, the CNJ received the same honor from the Panhandle (Texas) Press Association and the “Best of Show” award from New Mexico Associated Press Managing Editors — a sweep of the region’s top honors for newspapers our size. All told, the CNJ received 42 awards this year, including 18 first-place honors.
Awards aside, we know we are not a great newspaper. We make too many mistakes, we are not aggressive enough at providing information and we lack consistency. But it’s not easy to win the top award from each of the three press associations in our region in the same year. We’re pretty excited about those achievements.
Then again, we didn’t win any national or Freedom Communication awards. We can’t run with the big dogs. At least not yet.
Wait till next year.

From the Editor’s Desk is a weekly memo to CNJ readers. David Stevens can be reached at 763-6991, extension 310.