Beginning this week, MinnPost.com will expand its coverage of politics, arts, business and sports by adding several new journalists and features.
Kathryn Pearson and Blois Olson are joining MinnPost.com to report on and analyze state and national politics.
Kathryn, a political scientist at the University of Minnesota, specializes in American politics and Congress. She has written extensively about the state and national political scene, and has appeared on Minnesota Public Radio and “NewsHour with Jim Lehrer.”
Blois has been a contributor to online political coverage and commentary in Minnesota for years. After working on several campaigns, he cofounded MN-Politics.com, a leading online source for Minnesota political information. He’s now an executive vice president at Tunheim Partners, a communications firm in Bloomington.
The addition of Kathryn and Blois is part of an effort to expand our political coverage. The national political conventions are just weeks away, and MinnPost.com journalists will be reporting from the Democratic gathering in Denver next month and Republican convention in St. Paul Sept. 1-4. We’re also making ambitious plans to cover this fall’s campaigns in Minnesota.
But as regular readers know, there’s a lot more to MinnPost.com than political reporting.
More music coverage
We’ll be expanding our music coverage with the addition of regularly anchored posts by Jim Walsh and Britt Robson.
Jim is a frequent MinnPost.com contributor who’s been posting missives from his “Mad Ripple Hootenanny” in New York the past few days. A longtime Twin Cities musician, editor and writer, he is the author of “The Replacements: All Over but the Shouting.” Look for his “Monday Morning Playback” post each week; in it he’ll touch on music he’s hearing on the air, in clubs and on CDs and either loved or loathed.
Britt will conduct interviews and showcase a wide variety of music each Tuesday and Friday, beginning Aug. 5. Britt has written knowledgably about every kind of music from opera to punk to hip-hop, and his music posts will be a habitual read for people who want to know what is going on in town.
We’re also expanding our business coverage, introducing a lively weekly feature by John Reinan that taps into the thoughts of some of the leading marketing thinkers and practitioners in the Twin Cities. John will delve into the dramatic changes caused by new media, changes that affect businesses, consumers and careers throughout Minnesota.
John is well-connected in the Twin Cities marketing world and is a senior director at the Minneapolis marketing agency Fast Horse. A three-time Pulitzer Prize nominee, John has reported for seven newspapers, including three years as consumer/marketing reporter at the Star Tribune. Check out his first post, which appears today.
MinnPost will be doing more with sports as well.
Next month, for coverage of the Olympic Games, our man in Beijing will be Jay Weiner. Jay has covered every Winter and Summer Olympics since 1984. He’ll use that experience to offer perspective on the 16 days and 17 nights of Olympic competition and pageantry. Jay will not only chronicle the efforts of Olympians with Minnesota ties but also cover some of the social, cultural and political controversies facing China as it takes its turn in the international spotlight. Look for stories, posts, photos, podcasts and more throughout the Games.
Careful MinnPost readers will also notice some other changes on the site.
We’ve launched a new Comments presentation that makes it easier for readers to view comments and to post comments. And we’ve added an easier way for readers to use social networking sites to share content on MinnPost.com.
Beginning today, we’re dropping the MinnPost in Print feature. Readers will continue to be able to print stories from the site. But as more and more of you are reading MinnPost online, we found too few readers were using MinnPost in Print to justify continuing putting together a printable summary of the site.
Finally, humor writer Al Sicherman will be taking on a new role. We’re discontinuing “Verse or Worse,” and have asked Al to offer his unique take on events and news developments in town from time to time.
MinnPost is less than a year old, and we’ve received many valuable suggestions from our readers since we launched in November. We will continue to make changes on the site and add enhancements to meet your needs for information and analysis. Even now we’re planning significant improvements in our content and presentation that you’ll be hearing more about in the coming months.
In the meantime, I’m pleased to report that reader interest in MinnPost.com keeps growing. We had more than 125,000 unique monthly visitors last month, as measured by Google Analytics, an increase of more than 10 percent from the previous month. We now have 932 members, people who have decided to support financially the nonprofit journalism that MinnPost.com provides.
I’d like to hear your thoughts about how MinnPost.com is doing. Feel free to add your comment at the end of this article, or if you prefer to communicate privately, email me at jkramer [at] minnpost [dot] com.
Joel Kramer is CEO and editor of MinnPost.