You will see an improved News & Observer with a new appearance starting Monday.
Our print paper has had the same look for about 10 years. It needs to be updated to reflect some of the changes in how information is reported, distributed and received.
On the second page of the A and Sports sections, you will see daily features that reflect what people are saying online and in social media.
The new Sports feature, Sports Now, will include an excerpt from one of our sports bloggers, as well as Twitter highlights from the North Carolina sports community.
On 2A, Talking Points will report on the digital conversation, locally and nationally, and will show which stories are hot in the Triangle.
To make room for Talking Points, television listings will return to our features sections. We also will add six channels and three hours to the listings, which will run from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m.
In the Weekend section on Fridays, you will find a new roundup of movie reviews. In Home & Garden on Saturdays, we will add new columns on decorating and gardening.
To make room for some of these features, nine comic strips (roughly one-quarter of our comics) will be eliminated. We have been one of the few daily papers in the country to run two full pages of comics. We are dropping 13 strips and adding two (Cul de Sac and Reply All).
We will add back two of your favorites. Send e-mail to email@example.com. We will receive your comments for two weeks. You may vote once for the two comics you want returned.
The paper also will have a new look. The page will be slightly narrower (by less than a half-inch) but will be easier to read. On section fronts and many inside pages, we will run five wider columns instead of six narrow ones. The wider columns about 2 inches wide enable most readers to move through a story quicker. The size of the type in stories will not change.
The front-page nameplate will return to a style similar to what The N&O used for much of its history. It uses upper- and lower-case letters, not just the upper-case style weve used since 1993.
All of these changes will be reflected in our e-edition, which is available on desktop computers, laptops, smart phones and tablets, including the iPad. The e-edition is a digital replica of the final edition of The N&O and is available to print subscribers for $1 a month. Non-subscribers pay $5 for four weeks.
The e-edition is a great way to read the paper, especially if you travel or live outside the Triangle and want to read the final edition. You can subscribe at 800-522-4205 or newsobserver.com/e-edition.
Our 10 community papers will make similar appearance changes, effective with Wednesdays editions.
Newspapers should hold on to their best values but change to meet the demands of their readers and advertisers. These changes are designed to respond to your needs. Let me know what you think of your new N&O. Thanks for reading.
Drescher: 919-829-4515 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter @john_drescher