Goshen News, Goshen, IN

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May 31, 2014

Journalism: There's no time like the present

As I sit down to write this blog, it’s hard for me to believe I’ve been in the journalism business for nearly 25 years. The word “blog” didn’t even exist when I got my start covering school board meetings and barn raisings for the Shipshewana Times-Sentinel just a few weeks after graduating from Goshen High School.

If I told somebody I needed to blog back then, I’m pretty sure they’d leave the room suspecting something very unpleasant was about to happen. The same would likely be true if I said I had to tweet. Hashtag? That would have gotten you arrested in LaGrange County. And in those days “social” media often involved a notebook, a lunch counter and a conversation.

We’ve come a long way in the past quarter century. Technology continues to evolve, forever altering the approach of distributing journalism and consuming information. Keeping up is often a daunting task as we wade through the surging current of the digital revolution. Think about it, when’s the last time you used a typewriter?

Honestly, I think the most valuable class I took at Goshen High School was zero hour keyboarding my freshman year. That was the last time I used a typewriter, but it translated well into the computer age. I remember the original Macintosh computers in the GHS “Tomahawk”/”Crimson” office. My current GALAXY Note 3 cell phone that I carry with me everywhere has a bigger screen than those Macs.

I watched as proportion wheels and X-acto knives gave way to the computer mouse and Adobe PageMaker, which in turn gave way to QuarkXPress, which gave way to InDesign. Back in the day I couldn’t throw a pica pole in the newsroom without hitting an AP Stylebook. Now we just use our handy-dandy Internet machine on our WiFi accessible iPads to find out that the Associated Press dictates that “Internet” is always capitalized in print.

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Last weekend (July 12) the Goshen Parks Department held its Kid’s Try-athlon to promote childhood fitness and this week (July 18) the new bicycle trail is open to the fairgrounds in Goshen, offering residents a healthy way to get to the annual agriculture exposition. Have you joined the local fitness movement?

Yes, I work at eating healthy and exercising
No, I am happy with my fitness level
Changing my diet and exercise frequency is a work in progress
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Daniel Riordan has been writing for newspapers since he was 16. Previous newspaper stops include Warsaw and Plymouth. He joined The Goshen News in March 2013 and is enjoying getting to know the city. He has up to this point been able to resist any urge to watch cat videos on YouTube.

I am a journalist for The Goshen News in Goshen, Ind. I handle regional news and am the digital content editor.

Shelly Wilfong is the director of the International Baccalaureat Degree program at Goshen High School in Goshen, Ind.

David Vantress is sports editor at The Goshen News. He is a 1994 journalism graduate of San Diego State University. David has opinions and isn't afraid to share them.

Sam Householder is the chief photographer at The Goshen News. He is a 2010 graduate of Ball State University, with a bachelor's degree in photojournalism. He lives in Goshen with his fiancee, Ashley, and their cat, Rascal.

Roger Schneider is city editor for The Goshen News. He enjoys bicycling, fishing and photography.

Scott Weisser is entertainment and emergency services editor for The Goshen News.