EDITOR'S DESK: That supporting-our-advertisers thing

       I don't want to say we really took it easy over the holidays (not printing a paper for a week and all), but it was nice. Part of our seasonal pleasure included shopping at places that take out ads with us. This in turn spurred contemplation on that whole phenomenon. You've probably noticed the promotional boxes in the Pioneer almost every issue: “Please support our advertisers.” I guess it's pretty obvious why we put those boxes in. As a small paper that's funded chiefly by advertising (with help from subscriptions), we really appreciate it when our readers at least check out the offerings of those who choose our publication to spread the word about themselves.
       But there's something else going on here. Just as we try to publish a quality paper that's informative and true to the Westside, we also attract much of our advertising interest from Westside business people who appreciate that. We seldom solicit ads from stores elsewhere in town, unless it's for some useful service or product that isn't necessarily offered on the Westside. Thus it is that most of the ads you see in our paper are for places that are neighbors to you, not just in terms of geography, but sentiment as well.
       Another point that's worth making is that, unlike some other newspapers which will go unnamed, we don't offer story-for-ad "deals." We respect and value each of our advertisers, but decisions on which stories run are - and must be - hinged on news significance. And so, that's another favorable point for the businesses who buy space in the Pioneer, that their decisions to do so are based
       solely on how much they think advertising will help them financially, not on some news "favor" that might be brokered.
       So there you have it, our advertising policy. Hopefully it's useful background for the next time you see that little box in our paper that reads: "Please support our advertisers!"

- K.J.