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Sunday, May 1, 2016

Positively Muskegon - Our Narrative - Editorial Thoughts From Andy O

Muskegon.  By no way do we claim to be perfect.  No one is going around town in a limo everyday.  People work, they find ways to make ends meet, shop at yard sales sometimes, appreciate kids, help neighbors out and something that everyone should be proud of, a LOT of people find ways to volunteer for things.  We have been, currently are and look forward to years to come of being an honest, blue collar town that appreciates a good time, neighborhood beer tents, bowling leagues and long summers as the stewards of the best beaches in the country.  Not bad huh?

Well, I came to the conclusion that our story wasn't being told properly.  If you were to believe everything you hear and see on the news or in the one would ever come out of their house.  Back to the "not perfect" part.  We've got things to work on.  We owe it to ourselves to find our pride, our neighbors pride and we owe it to ourselves to say "Hey!  This is our town"

I chose online for Positively Muskegon for a reason.  We can do what others can't in other media formats.  We're not limited by a transmitter, news director or pressure from sponsors to see how many times their ad has been seen thanks to "click bait" which gets you to continue to click on stories to drive up numbers.  We can share this message far and wide and show people that Muskegon isn't a threat.  It's not what you hear and above all, there is real opportunity for people here, and in one visit most people see....there are friendly, honest people here who are glad to see visitors.  Speaking of comes the meat of the story.

Last week, I shared this picture of  The Block House that was taken by Tom Gifford.  It was a striking view and taken at 2 a.m. after Tom went back and forth about going to take it.  I shared it on Facebook and my personal page.  Between the two pages, that photo was shared 961 times.  Impressive,  but do you know the averages?  On average, but most accounts, a Facebook user has 338 friends.  That means, from the original shares on those two pages....that photograph had the potential to be seen by 324,818 people.  Folks, we're pushing the half a million mark with one photograph!  I can't claim that number to be accurate, but it speaks volumes.  We have the ability to change our story and show the world that Muskegon IS filled with great things, great people and that the whole "Watch Us Go" no joke.

If you simply take a minute to share the stories you see here with your friends.....think of the reach.  If you take the time to tell your own stories of the people and places that make a difference, even in just a single FB post, imagine how many will see that different message.  A simple photo of something you enjoyed in all adds up.  When we take the time to counter every story told elsewhere with the simple thought of something to be proud of in Muskegon.....the tide turns.  The narrative becomes the perception and the pride in who we are....where we live....and how we compare to other areas around Michigan, in a short matter of time...we've changed for the good.

Positively Muskegon is only one small voice, but....we don't mind one bit yelling with it to let people know that we are a community filled with treasures....tradition... and a future.....we'll keep right on being that one little voice!  We invite you to yell too!

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