I sent the following to subscribers of ThePhillyFiles on Mailchimp:
Itâ€™s hard for me to believe but today marks *six weeks* since the kickoff of ThePhillyFiles.com!
Of course, itâ€™s not like there was nothing on July 3, and everything suddenly appeared on July 4.
I spent time experimenting with issues on the navigation, which articles to write â€” even changed platforms â€” and a whole lot more, and thatâ€™s continuing.
For example, a week ago,Â News Home/SectionsÂ â€” which is the homepage â€” was just articles Iâ€™d written, with widgets on the right side. Since then, I added a bunch of news feeds to it, so you can follow all sorts of news. It should be interesting, whether you live in Philadelphia or canâ€™t even find it on a map.
Then, thereâ€™sÂ the weather. Somebody was finally able to show me how to get the maps toÂ update on their own! Now, you can make good use of it.
In sports, I added more local teams, different sports, more feeds, and a generic sports section that has a combined local team calendar.
And perhaps saving the best for last: Yesterday I was able to cover the huge breaking news story â€”Â six Philadelphia police officers shot in a seven-hour standoffÂ â€” without leaving my desk at home, and without an army of professionals working behind me, or anyoneÂ at the dangerous scene. Sure, it was a lot of work and I hadnâ€™t eaten during that time, but it was well worth the effort.
In fact, I took a quick look around at the major news sites and realized nobody else had worked the police commissionerâ€™s word â€œmiracleâ€ into their headlines!
Also rather miraculously, nobody was killed and lucky for me, the suspect surrendered before I went to bed. This place doesnâ€™t have an overnight shift if something that needs immediate attention should happen. Someone would have to call, or I’d actually have to hear it on my own.
I updated the article constantly, and posted highlights on Facebook,Â TwitterÂ andÂ Instagramâ€” so itâ€™s worth liking or following each of those pages to run into new details, unless you check back in with ThePhillyFiles.com constantly!
Thereâ€™s still a lot of work to do, and I have plenty of thoughts.
Iâ€™d like to do less crime and fewer missing people, but those stories do give a taste of whatâ€™s happening in the city, and what the police department chooses to send out to the media.
Two recent stories that go beyond the basic, average crime wereÂ The war on guns, from Philadelphia to the fedsÂ from last Friday, andÂ Historic human sex trafficking conviction; Victims were addicted to opioidsÂ from Monday. And if you missedÂ Video: 2 wanted for setting fire inside convenience storeÂ from Monday, youâ€™d probably be shocked how one device pretty-much blew up the inside of a convenience store and how flames shot up outside. (Click to watch it. The inside is on the left and the outside is on the right. The video lasts just about 45 seconds.)
I want more event and community stories, along with helpful information thatâ€™ll help readers save money and enjoy themselves more.
Of course, I canâ€™t do everything at once. Please forgive me since Iâ€™m only one person, also working on a blog, and looking for a job if there are not enough businesses advertising.
PleaseÂ contact meÂ if youâ€™re a business owner interested in advertising â€” or if you have sales experience, know parts of the city and would like to make extra money going door-to-door, selling ads. I can create art, have various sizes available and am certainly negotiable.
Also, use the comment section at the bottom of most pages to let everyone know what you think, and get a discussion started. Philadelphians arenâ€™t shy and the internet isnâ€™t the place for a one-way conversation.
Certainly keep in mind, when it comes to crime stories, I can only report what the police say. I often have questions and feel some stories are incomplete, but report them anyway when I decide they would be more beneficial than not.
Anyway, thank you for subscribing and reading â€” especially the 66 of you who did so yesterday and the nine who did today. If youâ€™d like, you can let your friends know the place to sign up is https://mailchi.mp/5272b7eb3555/thephillyfiles, rather than WordPress. (Or simply forward this email to them!) I promised occasional emails and donâ€™t want anyone getting alerted every single time I post a story, since thatâ€™s probably too much. On Mailchimp, I only ask for email addresses.
So in the meantime, please use ThePhillyFiles.com to your benefit and let me know what I can do better. Whatever it is, itâ€™s probably worth a try!
Lenny the publisher
P.S. Iâ€™m sorry to all the new subscribers from WordPress who got an automatic email at 1:33pm ET when I moved your email addresses over to Mailchimp, which is what I use to send out emails. I sent one out a few weeks ago after 40+ people signed up on one day, but never saw it. Apparently, the same email went out to new subscribers today! Iâ€™ll change that before I move email addresses over again, if thatâ€™s necessary. Luckily, there are links to four better stories in this email!
P.P.S. Please donâ€™t forget to subscribe to ThePhillyFiles at https://mailchi.mp/5272b7eb3555/thephillyfiles!