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Enhancements ahead as ADN approaches five years

Some exciting developments are happening in the world of Alabama Daily News as we approach five years in business this January.

First, we have a new, redesigned website! How do you like it?

It would be an understatement to say we outgrew our old digs, both in design and server space. The old site was never built to handle the kind of traffic ADN now routinely sees, which is why there were occasional crashes or slowdowns when stories went viral. Those will now be a thing of the past as our new site and dedicated server are built for speed and comfort.

The new site is designed to be more readable and user-friendly, with a fresh color scheme and an engaging, magazine-like feel. You’ll notice that stories are categorized to make them easier to find by topic or by search. We also have dedicated sections for Inside Alabama Politics, Commentary, the Daily News Digest and topical interests, such as the upcoming 2023 legislative session. We’re also toying with the idea of a comments section for ADN Insiders. Thoughts on that appreciated.

I’m also pleased to announce that we’ll finally be bringing back the “In the Weeds with Alabama Daily News” podcast. It’s a shame it ever went away because it was really growing in popularity when we stopped recording. The truth is that hosting a podcast can be quite time consuming and, when I was named host of Capitol Journal on Alabama Public Television, my time became exceedingly scarce. Thankfully, podcast technology has improved since then and so has my time management.

We don’t do a lot of editorializing here at ADN, but I’m frequently asked for more of the analysis that we provided in the early days. “In the Weeds” is the perfect outlet to allow Mary and I to break down what’s happening in the world of Alabama politics, with analysis and interesting guests. Our endeavor is to publish weekly, but I haven’t settled on a day. Suggestions welcome!

Last but not least, we are bringing on a new featured columnist at ADN. Stephen Boyd, a veteran Washington politico who recently left Capitol Hill for the private sector after nearly two decades in government, will be contributing a weekly column informing ADN readers about what’s happening in Washington from an Alabama perspective. There are few, if any, Alabamians more plugged in to DC politics than Stephen. Plus, after serving as a House chief of staff, a Senate chief of staff and Assistant Attorney General of the United States, his experience informs his perspective.

While I try to stay up to speed on D.C. politics, I’m no longer able to offer the kind of direct insight to what the delegation is doing like I could four or five years ago when I had just moved back. I feel like we’ve been missing that DC connection at ADN for some time, and this is the perfect way to offer it. I predict that Stephen’s column will soon become must-read material among Alabama politicos. Check out my Q&A with him for a preview of what to expect.

That’s it for now. I should also note that we are hiring! Alabama Daily News is seeking a reporter who can help us cover state government and politics with our unique brand of quality, fair, informative news with an insider perspective. As you may remember, our last State Government and Politics Reporter Caroline Beck got a great job with The Indianapolis Star some time back. While we hated to lose Caroline, it goes to show how ADN can be a launching pad for a young journalist starting their career. Come be a part of our team!

Thanks so much for reading Alabama Daily News. Thanks especially to our sponsors, Capital News Service member papers and paying ADN Insiders for supporting ADN and making our growth possible.

Cheers,

-todd

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