The Page – August 23, 2023

Well, it probably wasn’t intended to come out the way it did! But it sounds so good we can’t overlook it!
Premier Danielle Smith was busy recently sending out so-called mandate letters to her cabinet ministers. These letters are basically instructions and expectations of what Smith and her government expect to see happen in each department.
The letter to Alberta Environment Minister Rebecca Schulz was reported in the Jasper Fitzhugh newspaper. You can see the write-up at
Without detracting from the actual intent of the mandate letter, you may have got the joke here. Sound advice for any politician we thinks. Maybe even a couple of newspaper columnists! Hint: You ever hear the term ‘gasbags?’
Of course, in defence of us all, politicians, journalists and coffee shop experts, there probably are indeed ‘good’ emissions, ‘bad’ emissions and likely ‘useless’ emissions too. Good to know, eh?

Northern Sunrise County is on their 12th County Calendar Photo Contest.
The contest is taking entries of photos in Sunrise County or Village of Nampa for their 2024 calendar. Deadline to get your photos in is Sept. 8. After the deadline, photos will be judged until Sept 22.
Details of the contest are at northernsunrise. net/county-calendar-contest-2 where there is a link to the rules (you can win a $200 value prize pack) or get bragging rights. Also, a news story is at /submit-now-for-northern-sunrises-annual-photo-contest/
Tip for photo takers – shoot your photos at the highest resolution your camera or phone will allow. This usually means SuperFine Jpeg or even better, RAW format.
These formats take more memory space, but will give much better results when the photo is used in print. So even if you think your shot looks good on a computer monitor that doesn’t mean it will look clear and clean in a print.
In fact, keep that in mind for any photos you might want to send to our newspaper or if you plan on making a print for an album or hang on the wall. The higher the resolution the better.

You may have seen TV ads about how Google and Facebook are turning off access to Canadian news sites.
This whole ‘access’ thing is due to the Canadian federal government and the C-18 bill intended to help Canadian news providers get some kind of ‘fair share’ deal from the two companies.
Our own newspaper industry in Canada has different ideas the best way to do this. Of course, as far as independent weeklies like this newspaper are concerned, our own ideas don’t get listened to much.
Google so far has not seemed to be doing much. But the actual government law does not go into effect until the end of 2023. Even so, Facebook, or Meta, has already started restricting access to Canadian news producers of all kinds. If you are a FB or Instagram user, you might be seeing messages like “There are no posts available” or something like that on news Facebook pages.
Down the road, you might see some kind of similar message from Google, or just simply see a radio, TV, or newspaper site not show up at all.

Along the lines of more ways to get news, this newspaper will be soon offering an improved version of what is called an e-edition of the newspaper.
This is an online version of the entire print copy of each week’s newspaper. It is different from our website, in that it is a direct copy of the actual newspaper and has all the advertising and all the stories.

In the meantime, so far as we can tell, there hasn’t been any real effect of the Facebook / Meta changes. Depending on who is doing the counting, traffic on our newspaper sites is up anywhere from 5-24 per cent over the same period last year.
Again, depending on who is doing the counting, our numbers range from 22,000 unique visitors to just under 60,000 per month at The smokyriverexpress .com range is between 10,000 to 24,000 per month. This is the high and low out of five different independent services counting traffic we used. The rest of the counts from the other services are in between those numbers.
This ‘who is counting’ thing is something we have been hassling our newspaper associations about for a long time.
Website analytics are all over the place as far as methods are concerned. We would like to see them standardized so everybody, including you yourself if you have a website, is on the same page as far as counting traffic.
As far as Bill C-18 is concerned, Google and Facebook / Meta between them get over 85 per cent of the ad business in Canada. Not surprising since they now own almost all the digital ad agencies in the world.
Hardly a level playing field!

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