The new and improved Xpress

Regarding your impressive new product: The color is really nice. It’s going to add a lot to stories you do on the environment, development, architecture etc. And in the entertainment and what’s doin’ sections, it will add value so that maybe you’ll be able to boost ad rates (we all would like it very much if you’re able to weather the economic storms—yet to get worse—without slashing either content or staff).

The improvements in layout are very nice—smooth and effective. The legibility, as in the movie timetable, is much improved.

Forget the staples. This is a paper, after all, not a magazine. The cachet of the newspaper, which you described with such clarity in your intro statement, is so steeped within any reader that no one would miss the staples much—and you’ll save the cost. The recycle industry would rather not have to deal with them anyway in their newspaper-mulching process (that’s a different factory line than the one that processes magazines and mixed paper).

Jazz could use more of a boost from you. It’s the only major new art form to have appeared in the last few centuries that’s uniquely American. Its effect on foreign audiences is one of the strongest instigators of pro-American sentiment of anything we can do. But it’s still the poor child as regards the support it gets from the broader community. It needs backing just on its merits, without regard to marketing priorities.

Your paper could be put out in any American city of 3 or 4 million with no apologies. We’re lucky to have you.

— Bill Jacobi

Editor’s note: Xpress did discuss the matter of staples with Curbside Management in Asheville, and we were assured that newsprint with staples is allowed in the newsprint-recycling stream. The staples are removed by magnets during processing.


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