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January 3, 2012 Published in Editorials Celebrates Fourth Birthday

It is hard to believe but turns 4 years old in January. Thanks to readers like yourself, we have grown each year to serve more people in our community.

At the top of our Masthead we list the number of "hits" our site receives each month. Over the 4 years this has grown from less than 10,000 hits per month when we started to 25,000 to over 750,000 per month today.

Hits, however, do not tell a complete story. One reader could generate hundreds of thousands of hits. There are also bad computers out there in cyberspace that attack sites, ours included, with hits that have nothing to do with readership.

We use tracking software like AW Stats and other methods to establish a more complete picture of readership. We can note our visitors, for example. Each computer has a unique IP address and when it visits our site we can note it. Each month through our management software we can compile the number of unique computer (i.e. visitors) that we have had.

Today each month we have between 10,500 and 12,500 unique visitors. A year ago it was 7,500 to 8,500.

We also have our base of subscribers which now approaches 6,500. These subscribers receive an email each day that new material is posted to the site advising them of the new content. Subscription is free and if you do not already subscribe you should. It is fast, easy and we keep your email confidential.

By all reliable measures we continue to grow and grow strongly in our community. Our growth has also been evident in the demands upon our technology. We recently more than doubled our computing power to speed up the site in the face of greater utilization and additional content. We do not want to slow you down.

We continue to adhere to the same high standards of journalism that we set when we began in January of 2008. We clearly separate "fact" from "opinion". We are not a blog. We are a community online newspaper that is committed to bringing you high quality coverage of important breaking news and events. Our stories are carefully sourced and fact checked.

We do publish opinions, our own and those from dozens of readers and leaders in our community. Airing opinions is a prime job of community journalism. Real debate promotes progress. We believe that we contribute to that process. But, If you just want to get something off your chest you can do that through our Rants section. Sometimes we all have to vent.

You can also get the up to date weather and traffic on the site as well as find games to play. You can search our archives of past stories and marvel at how many times the same issue seems to arise.

We welcome ideas from readers. After all, you are the real reason we exist. We are always trying to improve.

We look forward to being a part of your life in 2012. We look forward to maintaining your trust so you know you get it first and get it right on

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