Over the years, I’ve gotten a lot of questions about how and why we do what we do here at The Courier and the Daily Comet.

And I figure there are just as many people who might wonder the same thing, even though they might not have the time or the inclination to ask.

That’s why I’m writing this updated edition in a series I call “Frequently asked questions about us.“

Here are a few of the most common questions I’ve gotten lately, along with some answers I hope you’ll find helpful.

Why are you so liberal?

If you ask me, neither I nor or newspaper qualify as politically partisan or biased one way or the other. Our stock in trade is local news, not the national issues many partisans like to debate. Common sense and community interest, not partisan dogma, tend to drive our editorial decisions.

We have, however, taken positions on our editorial pages that could be construed as either liberal or conservative. Years ago, before we stopped endorsing political candidates, we backed Republicans and Democrats, some more liberal and others more conservative.

Cherry-pick an opinion, which we clearly label as such, or a news story that conflicts with your political views, and you might claim we're biased one way or the other. I would debate that, but I welcome the discussion.

Why do you charge for online news? 

We’ve done a good job of answering this question, but for those still asking, The Courier and Daily Comet decided in 2013 that we can no longer afford to give away our content online.

For print subscribers, online access is free. Otherwise, it costs $11.90 a month, about 40 cents a day, for unlimited access to either houmatoday.com or dailycomet.com. Right now, you can get your first month as a digital-only subscriber for 99 cents. That's a great deal for the most comprehensive local coverage of Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes.

The bottom line is this: It is no longer financially viable to give away local content that takes an enormous amount of time, money, dedication and expertise to produce. Does your business do that?

Why don’t you publish more local news?

One of our greatest challenges is to match our limited resources with our readers’ insatiable appetite for local news. And we’re always trying new and innovative ways of doing that.

The Courier and Daily Comet newsrooms have about dozen journalists combined. It’s impossible for us to be everywhere all the time, so if you see news happening or something missing from our papers or websites, call our newsroom at 857-2200, or call me at 857-2201. You can email me anytime at keith.magill@houmatoday.com. It's the best way to get in touch; I check my email regularly.

You’ll find a list of staff phone numbers at the bottom of page 2A every day. Or you can click on the “Contact Us” link at the bottom of our websites. Call any of us, and we’ll try to help.

Got a question?

I consider it an honor when someone cares enough to call and praise or even complain about something I or The Courier or Daily Comet have done or haven’t done. If you have a question you’d like answered in my next installment of FAQs, call or write and let me know. And, believe it or not, all it usually takes to get something newsworthy into the newspaper or online is a phone call or an email. I realize local news is what you want — and the more the better. And I know we can’t do it well without you.

-- Courier and Daily Comet Executive Editor Keith Magill can be reached at 857-2201 or keith.magill@houmatoday.com.