Doug Dorough, of Lee County, was the first to suggest the name "Bright Side" for a new reader-submission column that starts in The Albany Herald on Sunday. More than 45 percent of the more than 400 votes cast in the contest to name the column liked his idea.
ALBANY, Ga. — The Squawkbox, known for its critical commentary from the public, is getting a new neighbor, one with a brighter disposition.
Moving into the Page 2A neighborhood beginning Sunday morning will be Bright Side, a column that will give readers an outlet to talk about some of the more positive elements of living in Southwest Georgia.
The Squawkbox has been running in The Herald for about a dozen years and is one of the more popular features of the newspaper.
"Many folks in Albany made a case for balance in terms of the opinions that shape Albany," said Herald Publisher John Hetzler.
"The Squawkbox, by its very name, encourages people to complain. Having some sort of vehicle that encourages people to say good things about the Albany area has been lacking, and we intend to fill that void. We encourage people to share the good things about Southwest Georgia and hope everyone finds it as entertaining as The Squawkbox."
After asking The Herald's readers and its online audience to submit suggestions for a name for the column, 91 individuals submitted a combined 240 titles. The submissions were received through calls, emails, letters, online comments and faxes. There were some duplications and also submissions of titles with variations of popular words such as bright, good, good life, positive, kudos, sunny and up.
A seven-person panel went through an alphabetized list of submitted names and came up with seven finalists, all of which received at least three votes from the panelists. In addition to the winner, Bright Side, the finalists were Celebrate, Cheers, Good Life, High Fives, Kudos Korner and Shout-Outs.
In a week of voting, 424 votes were cast, with 45.05 percent supporting the winning entry — Bright Side.
The first person to suggest Bright Side was Doug Dorough of Lee County. A regular reader of The Squawkbox, Dorough said he believes Bright Side is a good contrast.
"It's a good concept in opposition to the Squawkbox," he said. "It gives us a chance to talk about the good things and the blessings we have going on."
Dorough is retired after a 29-year-career with Sears. His wife, Herta, is retired from Hallmark. They live in the Hickory Grove subdivision.
Beginning today, you will be able to submit comments to the column, which will appear on page 2A starting Sunday. Comments may be submitted by:
— Calling (229) 888-9351 and leaving a comment at the tone;
— Emailing: email@example.com;
— Faxing to (229) 888-9357;
— Mailing to: Bright Side, c/o The Albany Herald, News Dept., P.O. Box 48, Albany, Ga. 31702;
— Dropping a written comment off at our office at 126 N. Washington St.