Happy New Year 2021 from the Sons and Daughters of Douglass Alumni Association!
Monday, December 28, 2020
Greetings, fellow Douglass Alumni, Riverview Residents and friends!
After a pause of almost four years, I have decided to bring back the Douglass-Riverview News and Current Events blog link to the website's main page.
The reason the Douglass-Riverview blog link left four years ago, is simply because everybody stopped looking at it. Nobody was reading it anymore. We addressed this at several Douglass Alumni Board meetings. Most importantly.... nobody was sending me information letting me know what was going on around the alumni association, around the neighborhood, going on in their lives. I was ultimately wasting a lot of gas coming to Kingsport and spending a lot of time covering events... that nobody was reading about. I was taking dozens of pictures... that nobody was looking at. There is a counter that lets me know when visitors are reading the blog itself. So, I did know visitations.
I decided to publish any news and current events I did get, by sending to the Douglass website's mailing list, which required a free subscription. A big "THANK YOU" to all who subscribed... you're the heart of the website... yours is the soul that keeps the Alumni Association moving... you are the lifeline that kept the website going, and you actually kept me motivated, too. Another motivation was and still is, getting most of our big news published in the Kingsport Times-News, of which I am now a community contributor. Our news is important to Kingsport, too.
But funny thing though... nobody missed the Douglass-Riverview News and Current Events blog link when it came off the website. If they did, they kept it to themselves. I only physically heard from maybe two or three people about what happened to it... a far cry from the hundreds of people that used to click on it.
So where was our news going? It seems that everybody was posting their news, current events and pictures on Facebook. By law, I cannot take anything off Facebook and repost it on our website.. it's copyright infringement, which could get me in trouble. Bottom line is, I could not, and still cannot compete with Facebook for your news. I will point out that by logging on to the Douglass website, you cannot be spammed, given a virus, or have your personal information stolen like you can on Facebook. How many times have you had to change your Facebook password over the years?
The difference between the Douglass website and Facebook, is like Reverend Edge's Place trying to compete with Walmart. Y'all know you're gonna shop at Walmart, even though Reverend Edge is just down the street, only blocks away. If he'd been around, Walmart would have already put him out of business. Similarly, your contributions and readership to Facebook would have put a lesser-determined website out of business, but I refused to let that happen to the Douglass website. That's exactly why it is still with us. It was only the community blog link that disappeared.
Enough fussing.. what prompted the decision to bring the Douglass-Riverview blog link back to the website? One huge reason.. outside of the Douglass Alumni group and the neighborhood, other people around the city, around the state, even around the country and the world (most of them white) were actually still reading the Douglass-Riverview blog, which never really went away... only the blog link on the website disappeared. The blog and its previous news of us have lived on in the Google-sphere for about 13 years, where folks have always been reading about us and learning about our love for our school and our community. I'm a 50-year reporter veteran.. anything I write has a "reporter" feel and read to it, which does give it more importance and relevance in the Google-sphere.
But the specific instance that brought the Douglass-Riverview blog link back is when an administrator with the Tennessee Arts Commission in Nashville contacted me recently about some previous information they had found on the archived Douglass-Riverview blog NINE YEARS AGO with Google concerning two of our alumni, that has ultimately allowed those two Black people to receive a state grant for THIS year into 2021 to mentor young people and teach them their life occupations that have been passed down through Black generations. This is a tremendous opportunity and makes our Douglass alumni stand out among the alumni of other Black schools in the region (that's always a big thing with me). I realized that they learned of those folks by reading a previous Douglass-Riverview blog story I'd done about them. The new story and their accomplishments will be published on the News and Current Events website for Black History Month 2021 and will also be published in the newspaper.
That was reason enough to put the Douglass-Riverview blog link back on the website and make it available to our folks again, since it's available to everybody else. I've discovered that other people outside our organization still want to read about us, so they have been reading news of our past on the blog.
All of the former blog posts are still there.. just go to the bottom of this page, and click "Older Posts." The view automatically goes back to the previous page. If you keep clicking "Older Posts" and going back a page, eventually you'll get to the very first post I made on December 30, 2007.. the birthdate of the Douglass website.
How long will the Douglass-Riverview News and Current Events blog stay on the website? Your guess is as good as mine. I'm hoping that you all, as alumni.... as friends.... as neighbors.... as folks with a stake in what happens to your alumni association, will support the darn thing... will read the News and Current Events blog.. will send me pictures... will send me information, and will contribute to the news and current events that you read about. I'm old and retired now and I prioritize visits to Kingsport, but if you send me information and pictures, it will be published.
Please spread the word... the Douglass-Riverview News and Information Page is back. For how long is up to you.
You can still send that information, along with pictures and story ideas as always, to firstname.lastname@example.org If you're gonna post it on Facebook, send it to me, too.
We're more family to you than Facebook.