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21st century newspaper modeling

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>During The Baldwin Bulletin’s 20 years in business, our reporters have covered numerous campaign forums and debates around town during election season, despite the fact that they were largely pointless.>

>We covered these campaign forums and debates more as an obligation, knowing the whole time that they were pointless. In the past, on a good night, there might be 30 people in the audience, and half of them were either the spouses or parents of the candidates. Sometimes, kids would be dragged out, too.>

>The newspaper articles for these campaign forums were all condensed down to 800 words at the very most, due to the fact that you can’t dedicate an inordinate amount of space to something like a campaign forum. Trying to sum up a stage full of candidates’ platforms and messages also was largely pointless. Time was limited.>

>“Candidate so-and-so said that bringing more jobs to Baldwin County was his top priority.” “Candidate so-and-so told the crowd that that she>

>“Candidate so-and-so told the crowd that that she was most concerned about jobs and the economy.”>

>Last week, however, there was a breakthrough. The Jones County News, the sister paper of The Baldwin Bulletin, hosted a Facebook Live campaign forum with the two candidates for the Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit District Attorney position, Wright Barksdale and Carl Cansino. The forum was limited to just three people, including the moderator. This format worked much better than having numerous candidates, each bopping around and fighting for time. Barksdale and Cansino responded from remote>

>Barksdale and Cansino responded from remote locations via the Zoom video teleconferencing platform. The 67-minute video, still available for viewing on the Jones County/Gray Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook page, was incredibly informative, and it showed the contrasts between the two candidates.>

>We encourage all of our readers to check out the video on Facebook when they have a chance and get to know the candidates.>

>Some of best innovations are born out of a crisis. Thank goodness for this one.>