Let The Participation Begin!
To my friends and neighbors in Rocky River and Fairview Park, hello! To those of you whom I have not had the pleasure of meeting, I want to introduce myself. With all of you readers, I would like to discuss the Observer Media Project. My name is Jim O’Bryan and I am proud to be your new publisher.
I am the founder and creator of The Lakewood Observer and the project, which has been heralded as the godfather of civic journalism. The Observer Project was started by a group of concerned residents who feared their concerns, views and ideas were not being reflected by mainstream media. So, in 2002, we created a platform to help residents get their voices heard.
Since that time, Observer Projects have won awards in almost every community we take part in. Together with residents, local businesses, local non-profits, and civic institutions, we have succeeded in helping define a community, brand a community and build a community under varied conditions. We know The Rockport Observer has the potential to be the star in the crown - a major asset to both cities.
While many media projects concentrate on news, the Observer Project was designed not only to share news but, more important, to share information about how the news impacts our lives and our neighborhoods. We all have different needs, and the Rockport footprint cuts across all economic and social spheres. This gives each of us a different take on what news means.
If we share news, views and ideas, we are much better prepared as a community to make decisions and to understand the decisions that are being made. “It is this diversity that makes us strong” is a comment often heard at the Observer Media Project. We prove that to be true everyday.
PLEASE join the Rockport Observer at http://therockportobserver.com/, where you can sign into the Member Center and start sharing your stories, thoughts, ideas, news, photos, poems, artwork - whatever you have, today. The Parma Observer describes itself as a “Digital Town Square”; The Westlake Bay Observer says “powered by the citizens”; The Heights Observer says “written by volunteers”; while The Lakewood Observer states “Proud Member Of The Observer Media Family Of Community Written And Owned Newspapers & Websites.”
I hope everyone will join with us to help define this project as we highlight our communities in a balanced and honest light. Together we can celebrate good deeds and good people and the reasons we love our cities. We can also have some heart-to-heart talks about things that can be done better. The Observer model promises that all who participate will have an equal seat at the table. At the Observer, we are all equal.
If you think we are making a valuable contribution to the community, please support the paper and our advertisers, take part and tell your friends.
If you think there are areas we should improve on, please contact me at JimOB@lakewoodobserver.com, or call my office at 216-712-7070. I am always happy to hear about how I can work with people better, represent a community better, work with schools and city hall better and, most important, make life for all of us better in these wonderful communities we call home.
Observer Media Project
Publisher of The Lakewood Observer. President of AGS Software, and considered by many to be the father of modern civic journalism.