Around 50 people attended the Daylesford District Community News Association Annual General Meeting in the Town Hall last Sunday, with an address by Don Watson on Truth and Integrity in the media. The main business of the Association is to publish The Wombat Post.
Truth and integrity in the media are topical and in his address to the Association’s AGM Don Watson spent some time outlining the forces of political tribalism and media diversity that have led to an increasing tendency for different groups to pick and choose their own truth. He argued the importance of considering diverse points of view, even when they are unpalatable, if you want understand and influence public and political debate, particularly for those who remain committed to incremental change driven from the centre of politics. In concluding he urged the Wombat Post to be courageous in its commitment to truth and integrity in pursuing local issues and accountability.
The Wombat Post has now successfully completed a second year of publication, despite the disruptions and turmoil brought by COVID. We have a regular rhythm of receiving submissions early in the week, an editorial review meeting on Thursday evening and publication on a Friday at 3pm. More than a 1000 stories on local news and features have now been published with an update to our subscribers and posting to social media.
The Wombat Post has become part of the local media scene. We have attended press conferences, we get media releases relevant to Daylesford and Hepburn Springs and we have a network of regular contributors. We have maintained our events calendar and directories.
During 2021 the Wombat Post had regular columns from Petrus Spronk and from Victor Szwed, who contributed weather columns and started a photo quiz. Later in the year we were joined by Tanya Loos and occasionally by Kevin Childs. Gordon Nightingale and other members of the Daylesford U3A Writers’ Circle made creative contributions. We thank our many contributors.
We continue to strive for accuracy and balance in the news, features and creative pieces we publish. Our Community Board is important in keeping us on track. This year the AGM re-elected Hal Swerissen as President, Mark Rak as Vice President, Kate Redwood, Treasurer, Celia Waldron Secretary and Tim Bach as an ordinary member. Tim is also the editor. As well, we were very pleased to welcome Robyn Rogers and Dudley McCardle as community board members.
We are keen to give individuals and organisations a local voice. To that end we have introduced a letters to the editor section. We have also published death notices and we have added an acknowledgement to country to our masthead to recognise the history and on going contribution of first nations people.
We are always interested in local news, stories and submissions.