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Welcome to our new Internet news site

January 28, 2009 - Mel Toadvine
If you clicked your mouse a few times, it didn’t take you long to get to this blog, a first on our new newspaper Internet site,

We launched our site a week ago and have been working to fill it with news that is of interest to Lehigh Acres readers.

In the past, you had to wait for your weekly paper. Not any more. If you have a computer, and you know how to move a mouse around, you can get your copy of The Citizen online in seconds and be ahead of your neighbor who may have picked it up in a news rack around the community. You can check out what's going on in Lehigh in our up to date calendar.

I have been interested in reading news on the Internet now for almost as long as there has been an Internet. I still remember the first night that while I was on AOL, the Internet suddenly was added. It was as if I was traveling around the world in seconds.

Today, millions of people get their news from the Internet. I read papers from all the country. I keep up with my hometown daily paper back in Maryland that way, too.

But there are still some, many of them - our seniors in town - who tell me they don’t understand how to use a computer. But many other seniors are learning and have taken classes at the Senior Center on Plaza Drive. Many of them tell me they e-mail their children up north and that is about all they do with the computer.

I wonder if they realize the whole world is at their fingertips today. There is literally nothing they can’t find on the Internet. You can even read the Holy Bible online if want.

The vast majority of the younger generation and I’d like to think of us as under 55 use the Internet every day – many at work and then later at home to go into chat rooms, look up information from around the world, display our photos or play games.

Some say there will always be newspapers and maybe they are right. But most, myself included, believe we are in an age where people who want instant news go to their computers and get it in seconds. They can read papers and other publications from around the world. The sale of “notebook” computers has soared in the past few years so people on the go can work on their computers anywhere.

The Lehigh Acres Citizen has joined the ranks of the newest daily Internet newspapers. And you are an important part of our Internet publication. Replying to articles, offering your opinion on issues and even writing a blog for us.

Now be warned about your comments. Be nice. You can be bounced off the system for good if you don’t use common decency in your comments. Keep your comments about the issues. Don’t insult the writer and call them names. And don’t start fighting dirty with fellow responders.

Readers tell me they want to see serious debate about the issues in our community. I want to know how you feel about this topic or that topic. Everyone has an opinion and there are plenty of issues today affecting Lehigh Acres, Lee County, the state and the nation. Let us know what you think. Start a interesting discussion group after reading one of the stories. You can even make comments after you have read a story. You first have to become a member. Just follow the directions; it’s easy.

Be robust with your comments on the issues. If there is a debate, back up your arguments. But don’t tell us if you think a certain person is an idiot or a liar or some other demeaning remark about his or her opinions. Like I said, be nice.

The is a place you can go to each day for obituaries in the community, a place to go to see late breaking news, to find out if you won the lottery and especially the new Power Ball. I'm hoping my numbers come up one of these days.

Tell us what you’re interested in.

If you hear about things that would make good stories, email me at The Citizen. You can also reach me at: And you can call me at 368-3944.

In the meantime, I am working with others who want to become bloggers. And don’t forget our polls. You can click on polls and go there and make your thoughts known and even leave a comment if you wish. If you have suggestions for poll questions, let me know.

When you give your opinion, a new box will flash up on the screen to show how your vote compares to others with bar graphs. The polls are a good way to find out how people in Lehigh feel about what is happening in our community.

If you’ve got a news photo and you want to share it with others, you can also email it to me at The Citizen. Get as much information as you can about what happened and let me know so I can get the rest of the details.

Look at our advertisers on our website. Most of them have moved into the new computer age and have their own homepages. If you click on most of them, it will take you to their Internet site with lots more information. Give your support to them.

How many of us have purchased things by using the Internet? I know I have. So go ahead and click on an ad and see what they have to offer you in the marketplace.

If you’re like I am, some of you probably spend more time on the computer at home than you do watching TV. As for me, I have the TV usually on CNN. I’m a news hound, can’t help it, have always been that way.

And if some of you don’t know have the Internet, you can go to the East County Library on Gunnery Rd. They have an army of computers there and they will help you if it is your first time.

If you’re a senior and you have the Internet on your computer and you don’t know how to navigate the Internet, give me a call, and I’ll come by and show you how.

Technology is changing and changing fast. President Barack Obama is our first chief executive who has insisted that he keep his Blackberry on him at all times. How many of us could do without our cell phones, which by the way can also be used to call up The Citizen website.

Give us a read and tell your friends about our new website. If you can’t find the printed edition in a rack in Lehigh because they’ve been grabbed up, you’ll still find us 24/7 as our publisher, Jack Glarrow, likes to say. Check us out each day. We want not only to be your community newspaper, but your community Internet news site as well.


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