Monday, September 16, 2013

Bradenton Herald's new digs: 1111 Third Ave. W

Goodbye, 102 Manatee Ave. W.

Hello, 1111 Third Ave. W!

The Bradenton Herald has moved downtown, right smack in the middle of things, as promised in my column Sunday. and in this 1A overview by Business Reporter Charles Schelle. We just survived our first full day of business here, amid a sea of moving crates and stacks of belongings. Other than the typical moving glitches and the challenge of  a new phone system, we're not missing a beat in the news business. (Here's a photo gallery by Grant Jefferies chronicling the move.)

The newsroom certainly has its moving heroes: Ken Larrabee, who led the technical nightmare of seamlessly moving our computers overnight; Barry Call, whose muscle saved all of our backs and rescued stranded furniture today; and our "mom", administrative assistant Angie Monroe. I hate to think where I'd be if she hadn't taken charge of this move!

Here she is, proudly at the helm as the newsroom takes shape again:

There's no sign out front yet, but here's my view: City Hall and Police Chief Radzilowski's crew. And Snooty's right around the corner. We've joined quite a neighborhood.

Stop by and say hello.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Commenting on is changing

Starting mid-day Sunday, we no longer will allow anonymous commenters on To join our discussions, you will need to log in using a Facebook account.

We made the announcement in my column today in the Bradenton Herald, giving enough heads-up about the change so you weren't surprised when you sign in over the weekend.


The very word gets people going. And when you make a change to established habits, well, you know you're going to hit a nerve. The column is among the most-read stories today, with plenty of those anonymous comments.

They make the reason for this change even more clear: Facebook requires account holders to use their names. By not requiring accountability from our commenters, too often they use that alias for senseless name-calling and abusive attacks on everyone from public figures to each other.

You can read more information about our Facebook commenting in this FAQ. And if you don't have a Facebook account, it's free to set up at

One reader’s comment  to other commenters today gives me hope: guys are exemplifying exactly what the BH says is happening on their webpage blog. This has nothing to do with freedom of speech but everything to do with a culture of cowardness, lack of manners, and browbeating. I'm glad that the BH is taking the high road. Comments will mean a lot more coming from people who really are speaking the truth.