Letter from the Editor: Cool New Tools on OregonLive


We’ve added new features to our website, OregonLive, and I want to make sure you know about them.

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I feel like the amount of information online can be a bit overwhelming. At the same time, I don’t want to miss anything.

Now readers will have the option to receive an email newsletter from OregonLive with topics they choose themselves.

Go to oregonlive.com/customalerts to discover this new feature.

You can choose from many locations – from Aloha to Woodburn – and many topics. Then, once a day, you’ll receive an email with links to OregonLive stories that mention the topics you’ve chosen.

It is a free service. Some of the articles included in the email may be restricted to subscribers. It’s a simple solution: subscribe to OregonLive or, if you’re a print subscriber who pays us directly, activate your online access at myaccount.oregonlive.com.

Subscriber-exclusive stories are tagged in the newsletter. The vast majority of our articles remain free to all readers.

If you sign up for a city, you will not receive high school sports news for that location. In testing, we found that people interested in a location received too many superfluous mentions of high school sports. If you follow prep sports, be sure to sign up for our free high school sports newsletter instead.

We provide many other newsletters on a variety of topics, from sports to gardening to food. These come out daily, weekly or as needed. But this new personalization tool allows readers to be even more specific in their interests.

Another new feature of OregonLive is the bookmarks tool. This feature allows readers to set aside an article for later reading.

Think about how often you see a title on OregonLive and think you want to read it, but then get distracted or busy with other things.

Now, if you see something interesting, you can just click the bookmark icon at the top of the article.

Any OregonLive article you read will remind you that you have stories to read. Simply click on this icon (it appears next to the bookmark icon near the Facebook and Twitter share buttons) to access a list of your saved stories.

No more trying to remember where you saw that item and no more searching the website trying to find it.

reader question: Editor Helen Jung and I received several versions of this question last week: “Thank you for the editorial on what each of the Democratic and Republican candidates plan to do if elected governor. But I was extremely upset that Betsy Johnson, as an independent candidate, was not given the same set of questions to answer. This is not a fair or equal representation of the upcoming gubernatorial election.

Editorial board sent endorsement questionnaires to major party the candidates who will appear on the primary ballot for governor and have released their responses on Oregon’s handling of the COVID-19 crisis. As an unaffiliated candidate, Johnson will not be on the May ballot.

We will take similar steps in the fall to ensure that readers have a thorough understanding of the positions of the candidates whose names will appear on the November ballot.

The pissed off reader: My army of reviewers, otherwise known as readers, have reported several usability issues in our articles over the past few weeks.

Last weekend, a report said debate moderators asked the candidates how they would “rule” beyond the control of state agencies. We meant “to curb”, of course.

On Tuesday’s Ask Amy advice column – on whether onions should be included in a giveaway meal – the response included the following: “You shouldn’t be in charge (or care) of these youngsters’ pallets children. It’s their parents’ job. The correct word is “palace”, relating to the sense of taste. “Palettes” refers to a range of colors. And there are always wooden “pallets”, just to complicate things further.

Several times over the past month we’ve written “mainly”, when “mainly” is preferred. A reader pointed out that we used “centered around”, while “centered on” is correct.

Readers notice errors. If we make a material error of fact, we want to issue a correction online and in print. Please email [email protected] to report such errors. Most typographical errors do not fall into the category of errors significant enough to warrant correction. I know they’re annoying (they bother me too!) but the thing is, we have fewer layers of editing between the writer’s keyboard and publishing than we had in the past.

Revisers and some readers are passionate about grammar and its use. As someone who started his journalism career on the nightly copy desk, I appreciate the concern and share the passion. Thank you for reading The Oregonian / OregonLive – and for caring about the proper use of the English language.


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