Thursday, December 21, 2017

Is the City of Lake Worth too complex for the press and news media to understand in this time of quick news cycles?

Oft-repeated on this blog, our City of Lake Worth really deserved positive recognition from the press and news media following Hurricane Irma, for example, on the Post’s editorial page. But because of several factors, most notably because the City of Lake Worth owns its own Electric Utility, that adds an element of “complexity”:

“I think one of the greatest casualties of the high metabolism of the news business is complexity. That’s a big loss.”
Quote by Bill Keller, journalist and former editor at The New York Times.

Also of note, local beat reporters at The Palm Beach Post were absent leading up to, during, and post-Hurricane Irma, except for reporter Joe Capozzi who helped the City get its news out on Twitter to local TV news organizations. Also remember, for several days delivery of the Post’s print edition was stopped due to windy conditions.

Despite all this, the City performed spectacularly and kept the public informed and updated with all the latest information. And for this they deserved some special recognition in the Central Palm Beach County “paper of record”.

Following Hurricane Matthew in 2016 a Letter to the Editor (LTE) by Lisa Stewart made the print edition (see below). But following Irma there’s not been one single acknowledgement or even “a nod” from the editor at the Post to the City of Lake Worth or the Electric Utility.

A few weeks after the storm encouraged my readers to send a Letter to the Editor (LTE) or a Point of View about their positive experiences and the swift, professional response from the City, for example:

“Were you pleased how well the City of Lake Worth and Public Information Officer, Ben Kerr, got so much information out to the public and to the media as well? Write an LTE about that!”

Remember the Hurricane Irma updates posted on YouTube by the City? This is just one of many:

Here’s the LTE published in The Palm Beach Post following Hurricane Matthew in 2016:
So. Do you have a recent positive story to tell? Maybe about the CANVAS Outdoor murals?
Write a LTE about that!


How to get your LTE published in the Post.

  • Keep your LTE to 150–200 words in length. The “shorter the better” is a good rule.
  • An LTE submitted by email (see below) is the best method and remember to include your phone number and complete address.
  • Listing your credentials will help greatly.

Then always follow-up!

  • Follow up your LTE with an email or fax later that day or the next morning.
  • Then later, call the editorial department and explain why your letter is important.
  • Don’t be timid talking to the editor and be polite.
  • Just ask outright, “Are you planning to publish my letter?”

Who knows, maybe your LTE will get published
in this week’s Sunday edition?

  • Email:
  • Fax: 561-820-4728
  • Phone: 561-820-4441
Snail mail:
Palm Beach Post
ATTN: Letter to Editor (LTE)
2751 S. Dixie Highway
West Palm Beach, FL 33405

Good Luck!