Our goal at The Christian Science Monitor is to have each issue lighten our readers' lives by bringing insight, understanding, and hope into their homes.
To that end, we are always seeking ways to improve our paper.
On Monday, we launch the first of several major changes designed to make the Monitor even more helpful to our subscribers.
The first of these changes will be a new weekly section on topics related to work and money. It will run Mondays. This section is the first of five we plan to introduce over the coming months in an effort to better serve existing readers and to attract new subscribers and advertisers.
By mid-June 1998, each day's Monitor will carry a special section. These sections will appear in the paper along with an undiminished daily report that will include national and international news, The News in Brief, The Home Forum, and editorial and opinion pages.
The sections are designed to focus our editorial resources on areas where readers tell us we can make the greatest contribution to their lives and where we feel we can best serve mankind.
During 1998, the Monitor's 90th anniversary year, we also plan to freshen the look of the front page and the rest of the paper. We want to make the unique character and qualities of the Monitor more apparent from the moment the reader first sees it.
Next Monday, we will begin using a new typeface throughout the paper. In recent months, we tested several fonts, seeking one that was more reader-friendly. More than 500 readers wrote to say their clear favorite was Bookman, the typeface we will adopt next week.
We are eager to serve readers outside the United States in a more up-to-date and complete fashion. We plan to offer a new weekly World Edition before the end of 1998 that will offer readers outside the US a timely and comprehensive report on the entire week. It will include selected stories from the paper circulated in the US as well as special material prepared for the international edition.
As you will see on Monday, business editor Lynde McCormick and his team have developed a package that is both informative and visually appealing. The new section will include information on investing, mutual funds, careers, issues people face in the workplace, and consumer news. Senior economics correspondent David R. Francis will provide insight on economic trends and developments that affect our daily lives.
Next, we will launch an arts and leisure section that will appear on Fridays. In one convenient place we will provide information on movies, music, museums, theater, TV, pop culture, travel, and sports.
Coverage, including reviews and commentary on movies and television, will be oriented heavily toward information that would be useful to families. The "Family Movie Guide," for example, will continue to provide detailed information on the levels of violence, profanity, sex, and drug use depicted in each film.
EARLY in 1998, we will start a Tuesday section that reports on education at all levels, from kindergarten through college and on to adult education. We will offer useful information on topics such as the cost of education, how to prepare for SATs, self-teaching of languages, and learning via the Internet.
There will also be stories on political, social, and economic developments that affect education, such as the charter-school movement, and reviews of books relevant to education.
A section on home and family will appear on Wednesdays. Articles will cover parenting, grandparenting, volunteerism, charities, neighborhoods, crime and safety, clubs, and subjects related to the home such as food and gardening.
Trends in values, ethics, religion, science and technology will be covered in an ideas section that will appear each Thursday. The ideas section will also include most of the paper's in-depth coverage of books, including our popular capsule reviews of fiction, nonfiction, and religion bestsellers.
We are interested in your response to these changes we plan to make over the next several months and stand ready to adapt our plans as we continue to learn how this newspaper can be of greater service. Please feel free to send a letter, or e-mail me at: email@example.com
Et tu, Monitor?
Alas, yes. We have committed the worst of literary betrayals. We have misquoted Shakespeare!
An editorial on Oct. 21 began: "Unfortunately, Polonius's advice to Hamlet - 'neither a borrower nor a lender be' - seems archaic in today's society."
As one Shakespeare buff was quick to point out, Polonius was actually giving that advice to his son, Laertes. Hamlet was somewhere off-stage.
It all reminds us of something else Polonius advised: "Give every man thy ear, but few thy voice ..."