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Monday, September 25, 2023

To our readers, who never go unappreciated: As I’m sure you’re all aware, in life, change is inevitable. Every second of every day, our world is changing. The U.S., the state of Florida, the city of Gainesville and UF: all changing. For more than 100 years, we at the Independent Florida Alligator have prided ourselves in the strong connection we’ve made with the community by printing stories that you can pluck out of an orange box and hold in your hands on any given weekday in the Fall and Spring. Whether it’s delivering breaking news or colorful feature stories, we have always been there for you. That is something that will not change and never will. However, the way that community members, UF students and faculty receive and read the news is changing, and we recognize this. The pace of our world continues to quicken, and the speed at which our community consumes news is increasing as well. To better accommodate your needs, dear reader, we must make some relatively dramatic changes. And so, although the Alligator will always deliver news to our readers when they need it most, we will only print our physical paper three times a week during the Fall and Spring semesters: Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

This change is not only an incentive for the Alligator to increase the amount of content we produce on our website and social media accounts, but it gives us the opportunity to improve the quality of content we physically print as well. Three days a week, our paper will be stuffed to the gills with the most entertaining, significant and critical news pertaining to our special community.

Starting at the end of August, we hope that our devoted readers will already be connected to our website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and mobile app. Not only will breaking news appear on the Alligator’s social media pages faster than we ever have in the past, but we will be implementing an online newsletter that will deliver news in the fastest, simplest and most convenient fashion. Again, the content that the Alligator provides will not in any way decrease. It will increase, and it will improve. In a way, we’ve been presented with a blessing. In addition to incorporating more detail to stories that were perhaps restricted by limited spacing beforehand, we’ll be able to focus on diversifying and improving our print publication’s normal layout. To put it simply, every aspect of our paper will be kicked up a notch — and we hope that’s something everyone can celebrate.

In the recent years, media practitioners have faced tumultuous times. Hopefully, dear readers, you’ve come to realize that journalism is not, in fact, dead. We very well may be basking in its golden age. But, as mentioned before, change is inevitable. As revenue from print advertising drops at an unprecedented rate, we must adjust, we must evolve, we must move forward. Decreasing revenue, especially for student-run college newspapers, is a problem that most publications in our country are actively searching for solutions to. Transitioning from five to three days a week in the Fall and Spring semesters is just our way of adjusting and improving, and we can’t wait to take you all with us.

We, along with our colleagues at the Alligator — truly some of the most hardworking students at UF — feel enormously satisfied and proud to have had the opportunity to print a publication five times a week. Despite the decrease in our weekly print circulation, we will continue to operate as one of the best college newspapers in the country, and (always independently) we will continue to make you proud.

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