Editor's Desk: It's a fact, readers like controversy ... and weather
Once upon a time, when newspaper newsrooms were filled with cigarette smoke, editors had to guess about what readers wanted to read.
This inexact science was based on coffee-shop chatter, letters to the editor and subscription cancellations from irate newsmakers.
In more modern times, we know what readers are reading based on technological data.
At least we know what online readers are accessing, though some numbers may be occasionally manipulated by ambulance-chasing lawyers or proud parents who keep returning to look again and again.
The Clovis News Journal’s free website — not counting obituaries — receives about 15,000 “page views” per day, meaning our stories are accessed that many times every 24 hours.
Some days, of course, attract more readers than others, which is what’s been happening for the past week, beginning with the primary elections on June 3.
It seems our readers like breaking news, controversy, death and destruction ... and weather.
They really like weather.
The largest number of readers to access a CNJ report in the past year is 66,259 — they were looking at reader-submitted tumbleweed pictures taken in January.
The second-most accessed report in the past year was a front-page guest column written by Hank Baskett III about the death of a young friend, Brooke Hankins, in March. That’s had 9,513 page views as of Wednesday.
Some of our best-read stories after that have occurred this week — weekend storm stories, reports on the closing of Furr’s cafeteria and Tuesday’s story on a proposed strip club planned for Curry County.
Here are the best-read stories online in the past week, as of 1:42 p.m. on Wednesday:
1. ‘Adult entertainment’ could be headed for Curry County ... 5,603 page views
2. Storm takes farmer’s roof ... 5,592
3. Furr’s closes its doors ... 5,385
4. Pedestrian killed at train crossing ... 4,119
5. Tornadoes touch down briefly ... 3,734
6. Former fire chief questions hiring process of replacement ... 1,477
7. City receiving complaints about mosquitoes ... 1,439
8. Tornado warning issued ... 1,398
9. Officials: Intersection less accident prone ... 1,368
10. Toddler reported missing located quickly ... 1,327
11. Editor’s Desk: Furr’s first menu included $1.59 prime rib of roast ... 1,049
12. Returning to the homestead ... 1,020
13. Despite hail, weekend weather welcomed ... 834
14. Tornado watch remains until midnight ... 650
15. 5 things to know about the Pioneer Days Rodeo ... 610
16. Serial DWI offender gets three years ... 560
17. Tornado touchdowns reported in Curry County ... 538
18. New gas company owners say they plan to freeze rates ... 509
19. Lillie’s life: Full of heartbreak and joy ... 507
20. Pioneer Days schedule ... 447
21. Editor’s Desk: NM elected female sheriff in 1966 ... 438
22. Veteran commissioners say expect change ... 416
23. To ‘coach,’ football applied to everything ... 376
24. From the editor’s desk: Clovis can expect air service by mid-July ... 373
25. Area’s pioneering spirit honored at breakfast ... 370
From the Editor’s Desk was compiled by Clovis News Journal Editor David Stevens. Contact him at: