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In living color



It is fitting that the Pink Triangle issue is the Indy's first to run in full color. While that change may seem cosmetic, it signals a gradual transformation of our print edition into a publication more akin to a magazine.

Over the next several months, the print edition of the Indy will focus more on narrative stories, graphics and photography that rely more heavily on analysis and context rather than on the urgency of the news cycle. Meanwhile, our Web site continues to evolve to become the place for us to publish shorter, more immediate daily news and cultural pieces, from city council decisions to live music reviews. In addition, look for more video and multimedia pieces online as we devote more attention to different forms of storytelling.

Although recent layoffs like those at The News & Observer add to journalists' anxiety everywhere, print is not dead. Our goal for the cellulose version is for it to be substantive enough that it takes readers a week to plow through it. Magazines and their newsprint kin give readers what the daily blow-by-blow cannot: mulling of the facts mixed with a marination of the longer view.

Other changes are afoot at the Indy: Mosi Secret, who recently won his second consecutive Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism (read the award-winning story), is leaving the paper to work at ProPublica, a nonprofit devoted to investigative journalism. ProPublica is among the recent crop of journalism startups to go the nonprofit route, tapping endowments and philanthropists (who, admittedly, can have their own agendas) in lieu of shareholders and boards of directors.

And we're delighted that Matt Saldaña has returned to the Indy as a staff writer. He filled in for Fiona Morgan while she was on maternity leave last fall, and covered a number of important issues, including the Durham Performing Arts Center and fire safety at Shearon Harris. He also sent dispatches from the New Hampshire primary as a freelancer.

One of the Indy's greatest challenges has always been geography. In addition to state issues, we cover at least four counties with very disparate political and cultural sensibilities. Carrboro is not Raleigh; Cary is not Hillsborough; and Durham is not Wake Forest.

To address the geographic and cultural divisions, we've made a deliberate decision to begin writing long-form stories to be portable across county lines. Even if the story has a Raleigh focus, we can frame it with a sense of universality so that it matters to people in Chapel Hill—or in the case of the Web site, to readers outside North Carolina.

As our experiment gets under way next month, we would like your feedback. Post comments on the Web site, write letters to the editor ( or contact me directly at

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