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Posted: June 27, 2011 4:28 p.m.

Change is coming to The News

Over the years I often heard my father say that a newspaper was such a resilient business that it would never falter even if he had a monkey as publisher.

I have not heard him make that remark anytime recently.

Publishing a hyper-local, community newspaper for me is one of life's highest callings. You are interacting and touching people on a daily basis. The stories that you tell have real impact on real people. The advertising messages you deliver will help bring buyers and sellers of goods and services together. These are noble causes and are services that need to be sustainable for years to come.

But it's also a service that costs us money to provide. We love what we do, but there are bills to be paid. Just like you, we can't afford to work for free, delivering high-quality goods without fair compensation for what we produce.

Since our founding in 1865, we've charged a modest sum for print copies of our product. We still do, but for some time now we, like most news operations in the nation, have been giving away our product online. is an exciting news site. It's where to go for breaking news and to find news videos, too, stuff we can't deliver to your door with your print newspaper. But our online news product doesn't pay the bills. It never has, and as long as we give it away, it never will.

It's a problem throughout our industry that has to be addressed and that's even more pressing now as the economic downturn has severely impacted traditional revenue streams.

The current business mode is unsustainable.

So, The Covington News is embarking on a bold new road. Beginning July 6, we will no longer give our award-winning content away online.

Unlimited access to the great content on our website will only be available to subscribers beginning on that date.

We'll still place breaking news, legal advertisements, obituaries and some other items out there for access to everyone, but our unique columns and other premium content will be included in a print subscription to the newspaper.

It's a way to reward the folks who have long stood by us, who recognized the value in what we do, and who helped pay the bills for our award-winning content.

We know that you can get some content from other sources at no cost, but you also get what you pay for. We let you know what's going on first, and we provide three times the local news and four times the local photos each week than you can find elsewhere.

This local content creation is an expensive proposition, and thus it defies logic to give it away to anyone with an Internet connection.

A subscription to The Covington News costs just $4.28 a month.

That's 14 cents a day for around-the-clock access to what's going on here in Newton County.

There's hardly anything you can buy for 14 cents a day anymore.

If you have questions about this process, please feel free to contact any of us.

We encourage you to subscribe today to help us continue to deliver great content.

Charles Hill Morris is publisher of The Covington News. Reach him at (678) 750-5006, or at

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