Looking back, looking ahead | In Our Opinion

  • Monday, January 1, 2018 10:23am
  • Opinion

Our heads are still spinning.

As the Review newsroom put together the last issue of the year — anchored by our month-by-month look back at the events that helped shape 2017 — we were once more staggered by the tremendous amount of major news events on our little island.

A new president; demonstrations and protests. A PSE takeover; community debate and division. The 75th anniversary of the Japanese American exclusion; a time of recollection and resolve. Winslow on lockdown; a shooter in Eagle Harbor. And tragedies, too many tragedies; beloved islanders lost here at home and across the water.

The Review news staff has filled hundreds of newspaper pages and filed thousands of online posts in the past year, and it’s always interesting to finally get a breather in the last week of December and look back at the stories that have most interested islanders. We pore over the numbers; scrutinize web logs and web traffic reports to see if the stories we thought were so significant were really the most popular ones with readers.

The answer: sometimes, yes, sometimes, no.

But overall, the year was a real downer.

Crime news and tragedies dominated our headlines in 2017, and that’s reflected in our analysis of the most-read Review stories of the past year. Sixteen of the top 20 stories on our website were in those categories.

On the upside, however, our island’s interest in activism and positive change was also underscored in a look at our top stories. Articles centering on our U.S. Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell’s opposition to President Trump policies were some of our most read pieces online.

Other reader favorites that weren’t absolute downers: bears on Bainbridge, the Bainbridge High “Sparkle” cheer squad, and the life-saving rescue at the Bainbridge Aquatic Center.

Looking at our online audience, we were encouraged to see growing audience numbers throughout the year. Whatever you may have heard about the “failing media” and dying newspapers, it’s not happening here.

The Review surpassed 1.3 million in page views this year, and boasted more than 592,000 users of our online content (a 23.5 percent gain over 2016).

As 2017 moves into the history books, we’re recharging our batteries to get ready for another unpredictable year. Thanks to all who have made this past year a success for the Review — readers, advertisers and staff — and buckle up for 2018.

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