Over the years, we have experienced many issues with our newspaper, once it was no longer locally owned. Back around 2007 before we had a website there were two occasions where they left out our ad. We opened our sale, and I had numerous people on the clock to pay, but no shoppers.
Then there were the ads with all the misspellings. For example, wrought iron became "rod iron." Once I started submitting my ads rather than dictating them, we solved that particular issue.
Then there was this old lady who used to be in charge of selling us the roll ends of paper for our rolling paper dispenser. She got tired of me coming in so often to buy these, and one day told me she had them on hand but needed to save them for her college students who were art majors.
Now the first question in my mind was how many of those students supported the paper with their subscriptions and their advertising. And the second question in my mind was whether I meant anything to them. So I retired those paper dispensers and went to buying flat sheets from a supplier down state. And that is what we use today.
For the last few years I have had this amazing lady who takes my ads, and life has been good. But recently, I had two awful issues, and they were not her fault, but that of the department who publishes the classifieds. They ran an ad for a sale I did three years ago! So all these people went to that home and ran the lady of the house ragged. I called the paper and reported it, and of course, they were apologetic.
But then it happened again! The lady whose home they bombarded called me and asked me to put a stop to it. I explained that I have no control over the award-winning Avalanche-Journal, but would report it again. She put up a big sign on her door that there was no sale there. So guess what the result of that was? People called me all day on my cell phone to ask where the sale really was, because the wrong address was in the paper. I got very little work done that day for fielding all those calls. I explained to every caller that the address was not a typo - the sale was a typo, as it happened three years ago.
Turns out that much of the entire classified section was reprinted from three years ago. I saw homes for sale, animals for sale - you name it - that . . . yes, were from three years ago.
In June, 2021 the A-J failed to run my estate sale ad two days in a row. It was challenging to get a credit for the bill they continued to send me.
My estate sale running August 22-24 suffered the same issue. Got up to read the paper Monday, August 23, 2021, and there was no ad for my sale. The ad lady earlier sent my proof and said it was scheduled to run. Alas.
The other issue I have with our paper is that there are no proofreaders. It is up to each individual writer to proofread his or her own work. I have stacks of Lubbock Avalanche-Journal papers in my office where I have marked all the errors in red, just as teachers do. My journalism background is a curse, because I can't accept the mediocrity.
And that brings me to the pictures below, which are actual pictures of the front door of the Avalanche-Journal at 710 Avenue J, Lubbock, Texas. The misspelling right on the front door should come as no surprise to anybody.