Category Archives: About us

Privacy Notice

This privacy notice discloses the privacy practices for www.riograndedigital.com. This privacy notice applies solely to information collected by this web site. It will notify you of the following:

  • What personally identifiable information is collected from you through the web site, how it is used and with whom it may be shared.
  • What choices are available to you regarding the use of your data.
  • The security procedures in place to protect the misuse of your information.
  • How you can correct any inaccuracies in the information.

Information Collection, Use, and Sharing

We are the sole owners of the information collected on this site. We only have access to/collect information that you voluntarily give us via email or other direct contact from you. We will not sell or rent this information to anyone.

We will use your information to respond to you, regarding the reason you contacted us. We will not share your information with any third party outside of our organization, other than as necessary to fulfill your request, e.g. to ship an order.

Unless you ask us not to, we may contact you via email in the future to tell you about specials, new products or services, or changes to this privacy policy.

Your Access to and Control Over Information

You may opt out of any future contacts from us at any time. You can do the following at any time by contacting us via the email address given on our website:

  • See what data we have about you, if any.
  • Change/correct any data we have about you.
  • Have us delete any data we have about you.
  • Express any concern you have about our use of your data.

Security

We take precautions to protect your information. When you submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected both online and offline.

Wherever we collect sensitive information (such as credit card data), that information is encrypted and transmitted to us in a secure way. You can verify this by looking for a closed lock icon at the bottom of your web browser, or looking for “https” at the beginning of the address of the web page.

While we use encryption to protect sensitive information transmitted online, we also protect your information offline. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job (for example, billing or customer service) are granted access to personally identifiable information. The computers/servers in which we store personally identifiable information are kept in a secure environment.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies.

This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the content or privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of any other site that collects personally identifiable information.

If you feel that we are not abiding by this privacy policy, you should contact us immediately via email.

What is Rio Grande Digital?

Mike Scanlon
RioGrandeDigital.com

Welcome to Rio Grande Digital.

Mike Scanlon

As of this writing, the site is in its infancy — or maybe it’s a premature newborn. There are still bugs to work out and features to add, a little tweaking here and there. But what the site needs most right now is a community. It needs you — readers, collaborators, critics and fans — to direct the subsequent stages of its development.

What this site is all about

This site, I hope, will grow up to be a news site. We have three of those, at least, in the Las Cruces market and a few false starts. Many news sites today belong to newspapers. Traditionally, newspapers have defined their markets as the geographic areas surrounding their newsrooms — roughly the area in which it was feasible to deliver newspapers. They have reporters, but their newsrooms are top-heavy with managers and executives. They have customer loyalty, but they carry a lot of baggage related to their print editions. They have financial resources, but they also have debt. Some have a lot of debt.

This site has no print edition, no reporters, no office, no money and no debt. We certainly don’t have any executives. We don’t really have a “we,” just a me. My break-even point is still within the range I can afford to lose, if it comes to that. That includes a year of pre-paid web hosting, domain name registration, a mailbox, a couple of boxes of paper clips, some expert advice and this WordPress theme I purchased. WordPress themes are all over the Internet free for the downloading, but I paid for this one because I believe that if you do good work, you should get paid for it. I don’t include the time I’ve spent setting it up and will spend in the weeks to come, but I hope I’ll find a way to compensate myself for that in the future. If not, I knew the risk from the beginning.

So while many newsrooms around the country are downsizing — some to the point of implosion — this site can do nothing but grow.

Having lived in Las Cruces for most of four decades, I have my own ideas about what our “community” is. I think it is Las Cruces-El Paso-Juarez. That’s what I want this site eventually to be.

Please take a moment to read about Our values.

Where the content comes from

As you click around, you’ll notice that much of the copy is what we in the newsroom would call “canned” copy or “handouts.” These free articles are produced by public information people who work for various entities, such as the city, county, school district, NMSU and others. But just because it’s free doesn’t mean it doesn’t have value. In a compilation such as this site offers, these articles help create a mosaic of life in our community. Or that’s the pitch anyway.

There also are little things here that I believe add value to the site: a currency converter, three-day weather forcast, New Mexico and Texas lottery results along with the prize payouts for different games. I hope there will be obituaries for the Las Cruces funeral homes. I won’t charge the funeral homes or the families for printing those because I know the obits are among the best-read features of many news websites. None of those things is particularly compelling by itself, but packaged together — along with a few more — I hope they begin to give people a reason to visit the site.

As time goes on and I get this website running smoothly, I will put on my reporter’s hat — which I proudly wore for many years of my career. I will write articles and take photos to put on here. I will actively seek op-ed pieces from the many bright people and great writers in our community. As important, however, I hope to generate money with the site and invest that money with some of the freelance newswriters in the community. I want to offer better freelance pay than anyone else — enough so that these talented and dedicated professionals can see the possibility of making a living by doing what they do.

I also plan to indulge my interest in Mexico by writing a blog you will find under the “Mexico” category.

In some of the earliest posts, you might notice my use of first-person plural pronouns. I use those as in the “editorial we.” In reality — as of the time of launch anyway, it’s just I.

How I plan to earn a few bucks

I anticipate three ways to create income with this site.

  • First, you might notice a number of advertising spaces around the site. I want to sell those and use part of that money to pay myself a modest wage. For more information about those, click any of them or click the “Advertise” link under the “About us” category just under the site’s name plate.
  • Second, I will solicit donations from readers. There is a “Donate” feature at the bottom of the right-hand sidebar. Clicking that takes you to a secure place at PayPal where you can make any size donation. Your support of independent media will be appreciated. I’m thinking about following Heath Haussamen’s lead and creating a place in which to disclose all the donors. I’d like to know your thoughts about that idea.
  • Third, I want to find some of the grants that might be available to independent media startups.

What I don’t want to do is set up a paywall and charge people to look at the site. That model, in my opinion, runs counter to the personality of the Internet.

Once I’m rolling in cash, I want to use PART of the advertising money, ALL of the donation money and ALL of the grant money to pay writers to write stories and photographers to take photos for the site. Of course, there’s no guarantee that any of those will produce a single penny. If that’s the case, I’ll probably seek out some volunteer collaborators to help me keep the site alive as a public service to the community.

So let’s do this together

Click around and tell me what you think. Report any problems, such as broken links, missing features or browser compatibility issues. I especially hope to hear about compatibility from my friends who have Apple computers. I hope you’ll give me ideas and constructive criticism. Tell me what you think and what you want. You can reach me any number of ways, including the “Contact us” information in the “About us” category.

Peace.

Michael Scanlon is a professional newspaper journalist. See his resume here.

RioGrandeDigital.com is published by Rio Grande Digital Media LLC

 

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Our values

“The American press was made free not just to inform or just to serve as a forum for debate but also to bring an independent scrutiny to bear on the forces of power in the society, including the conduct of official power at all levels of government.”

American Society of Newspaper Editors

 

Code of conduct

As news and information migrate from the printed page to the Internet, we believe it is important that standards of conduct are not left behind. While it is important for news sites to be aggressive in news-gathering and business practices, it is equally important for them to practice restraint. This balance is to assure our readers that we have taken care to present a fair, accurate and balanced report — that we respect and take seriously our readers and our community.

In that regard, Rio Grande Digital promises the following:

  • We will make every effort to avoid factual errors in our reporting. If we make an error, we will correct it as soon as it comes to our attention.
  • We will avoid any practice that could compromise — or appear to compromise — our fairness or objectivity.
  • We will not allow our personal interests to influence our news judgement or content creation. In any case where there exists a conflict of interests, Rio Grande Digital will clearly and publicly disclose those interests.
  • We will clearly disclose the origins and/or creators of our content.
  • We will respect the intellectual property rights of others. We will not knowingly plagiarize the work of others, but we may, from time to time, re-publish material after we receive permission to do so. We may quote the work of others under fair use provisions of the law.
  • Any person making a financial or other donation to this site or anyone affiliated with this site does so with the expressed understanding such donation will not — in any way — affect current or future decisions regarding content creation or placement.
  • Any person or business buying advertising on this site does so to promote a message to a mass audience with the expressed understanding that such purchase is made in exchange for good and valuable public exposure and the purchase or payment for it will not affect current or future decisions regarding content creation or placement.
  • In our context as affiliates of this site, we will not accept financial renumeration or material gifts from anyone under any conditions other than those described on the “About us” page of this site. Any renumeration or gifts we might accept outside this context — whether from friends, family members or associates — will be accepted with the expressed understanding that there is no relationship between those gifts and this site.
  • Anyone affiliated with this site who promises content creation or placement consideration in exchange for financial renumeration or material gifts, does so contrary to the policies of this site. We strongly urge anyone who has knowledge of such promises being made by anyone affiliated with this site to report the transgression using the “Contact us” feature in the “About us” category.
  • We reserve the right to amend or alter this statement in whole or in part by giving public notice of those changes on the front page of the site.

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