Standard-Examiner comics poll sure to stir up strong opinions

Mar 23 2012 - 6:00pm

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I really hesitate to dip my toe into this particular pool because people get upset every time I do.

Yes, faithful readers, I'm going to talk about the comics.

Last year, you may remember, we said we would be conducting a poll about our comics before the end of the year.

Hope you enjoyed it and took the opportunity to voice your opinion.

Oh, wait a minute. You're right. The poll never happened.

Sorry about that.

But you will get the chance to voice your opinion on the comics we carry, both daily and on Sundays. More on that in a minute.

If you remember, the impetus for the poll came last year when we started to print our own Sunday comics rather than be part of a co-op of almost 20 papers.

The problem with the co-op was that, in order to make a change in the Sunday lineup, 20 editors had to agree.

If you put 20 editors together, they usually have at least 30 different opinions, so asking them to change a comics lineup is a lot like expecting a group of unruly 3-year-olds not to grab each other's toys.

That's right. Chaos.

But the change to printing our own Sunday comics puts the content decisions squarely in our court. No other paper has to agree with what we want to do.

Of course, we know all too well that somebody gets upset every time we touch the comics.

Everybody has their favorites and their not-so-favorites. The problem is that my favorite may be at the top of your get-rid-of list, so making everybody happy is next to impossible.

One comic that often demonstrates that love-hate relationship is "Doonesbury."

In most comic polls I've seen or been part of, the split is almost always right around 50-50. That is, half of the respondents love it, the other half can't wait to see it gone.

Be that as it may, there will be a Standard-Examiner comics poll later this year.

The goal is twofold: First, to see if there are comics out there that our readers like better than some in our current lineup.

But second is the ability now to line up our daily and Sunday comics offerings, guided by what you tell us you like.

Because of the constraints of being part of the co-op, there are some comics we run daily that aren't in Sunday's comics and vice versa.

One prominent example is "Peanuts." We dropped the daily strip, but the co-op wanted to keep it in on Sundays. So it stayed.

We want to make the poll as interactive as we can. We're looking at ways we can tie it in to the Standard-Examiner Facebook page.

I can't give you a more specific time frame, but it will happen.

That's a promise.

Dave Greiling is managing editor of the Standard-Examiner. He may be reached at 801-625-4224 or dgreiling@standard.net.

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