In 2005 I began working on the Register’s website. At the time, reporters and editors did not touch the website. Web editors across the newsroom were tasked with shoveling all the print content online. But I wanted to make sure my photos got online – and in color. I wanted to see how many people were viewing our website, the Irvine section of the website and my articles.
I worked with the Central County web editor who was patient and kind enough to show me the ropes of our online content management system and the analytics. She even let me post my own content online when reporters were not allowed to do so. When the first round of layoffs hit, the Central County web editor position was eliminated. I realized that suddenly, no content would be going to the Irvine website section. So, I took it upon myself to post our content online and to teach my coworkers one-by-one how to post content online.
I continued my work online – finding ways to improve our content, the display of our content and the audience interaction with our online content.
Then, in early 2006 I met up with two other people at the Register who shared my impatient mood with our progress in moving online as a company. We called ourselves the three “musketeers” and met twice a month to share online ideas, achievements and setbacks. Eventually, we decided to make a stand. We approached one of the Register deputy editors and asked some of our most burning online questions. He seemed excited at our thoughts – and asked that we send over our ideas for moving online.
Thankfully, I had already written a whole plan of what the Register should be doing to move online. We turned it in and the “web manifest” as it soon became known circulated among top management. We three “musketeers” were appointed roles in addition to our day jobs as “web catalysts.” And the web revolution at the Register began.