Sep 4


Monday Morning Read

We've upgraded our website. Plus, the latest on the outrages committed by Hochul, Cuomo, Trump and the Pegulas.

We’ve launched a redesigned website. It builds off the strength of our previous website — easy navigation and a clean, uncluttered design — and adds more visuals and features that point readers to our best work.

Our upgrade was informed by market research performed in partnership with the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. They surveyed recipients of WeeklyPost, who said, among other things, that they wanted more graphics, photos and video clips embedded into stories, and guides to direct them to stories by topic.

I find the websites of most news outlets to be cluttered messes. We aren’t! No ads, no pop-ups, no distractions from reading.

I took note of the design and functionality of what I consider to be the best news websites and received valuable input from Garrett Looker, who recently joined our staff as a reporter and multimedia producer. I worked with Bob Zotara of The PMA Group, who handled design duties and managed the project, and Jason Russo of HostDog, who did all the coding and programming.

In addition to improving story presentation, we’re adding content, starting with a return of podcasts. This coming week, Dale Shoemaker will discuss his story that’s publishing Tuesday on the rich subsidy package officials in Niagara County have bestowed on Amazon. We have podcasts in the can with Congressman Brian Higgins and Pulitzer Prize winner Tom Toles that will publish later in the month.

In the near future, we’ll also provide readers with additional ways to access our content though push notifications and text alerts. We’ll also redesign WeeklyPost to add visual elements and perhaps more features.

As they say, stay tuned.

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In terms of my recommended reading for the week, it’s not enough that the Pegulas stuck taxpayers with most of the cost of building the Buffalo Bills a new stadium. Now, The Buffalo News reports that the billionaire couple plans to demand that season ticket holders — who also happen to be the people forking over their tax dollars to help build the stadium — cover about half of the team’s share of construction costs.

Ken Kruly, in his Politics and Other Stuff, offered an astute analysis of Carl Paladino’s loss to Nick Langworthy in the GOP primary for the 23rd Congressional district. In a nutshell, Langworthy worked the district while Paladino ran his mouth.

In the Albany Sleaze Department, Kathy Hochul is taking in campaign contributions in a manner that skirts ethics rules, and a state agency has agreed to pay a penalty concerning the practice of former Gov. Andrew Cuomo siphoning money from other departments and authorities to pay for his staff.

New York City has a glut of vacant office space, so of course Hochul has backed a mega-project that would flood the Manhattan market with yet more inventory. Rest assured, though, the fact the developer is a major campaign contributor has nothing to do with her support.

A couple of downers on the newspaper front. The Washington Post is expected to lose money this year, and Gannett, the nation’s largest newspaper chain, is laying off yet more journalists, leaving at least one small daily without a single full-time reporter. I think that makes the paper a shopper.

The Atlantic writes that it’s no secret what Donald Trump intends to do to our democracy if he manages to win the White House again.

Barbara Ehrenreich, who wrote Nickle and Dimed, the seminal book on the working poor, died last week. RIP.

In closing, to put a smile on your face as we say goodbye to summer, a stunning performance by Muddy Waters.