The Tobago News

Saturday, August 25, 2007 Clivia R 0 Comments

I don't mean to be a Basher. I'm a proud Tobagonian. Yes Tobagonian.
And NO we not all DARK, And THICK and talk funny and look like we carry baskets on our heads, and have big calves, and smaller foreheads. NO.NO NO.

Yes we do have an airport, and our roads are SUPERIOR, and Gas stations and Schools and Taxi Services. Sigh. Most Trinidadians know less about Tobago than foreigners. Their range of experience being visiting for Easter and staying in the beach Areas. They know Pigeon Point and Store Bay but know nothing about Signal Hill or Arnos Vale or Mason Hall or Stokely Vale. I can see it HUH? Wais that? Where is that?

I'm not mad about that. I kinda think of them as being sorely deprived of something that they can claim as there own.

Anyways, while most of the stereotypes are untrue about Tobagonians, this is what I will claim.

We are hard working people, we believe in speaking little and acting much. Hardworking, family oriented and most DEFINITELY - education is Key. That stereotype I will gladly accept.

Brilliant minds come out of this small island because Aunty Val, and Teacher Dorothy and Mrs Lovelace and Aunty Pearl and Mrs. Thomas and Miss Braithwawite made sure of that. Not just at school either, but when you ran into them at church or at some other gathering, they asked.
BABY talk was not encouraged. You had to ENUNCIATE, PROJECT. SPEAK!

Language was corrected, questions asked about progress in school and books read. So you had better be prepared.

This is what leads to my question.

I read the Tobago news to find out about what's going on in my island while I'm not there. The only portal - direct portal- except for my sister and parents and friends, Is the Tobago News.

It's connected to the Trinidad Express which in terms of online newspapers is adequate. Flash Banners. Graphics. Advertising moving bands and Branding.

Why then is the Tobago news such a BLAH boring static one? Why are the headlines so Uninteresting? I dont think that they lack for writers, or people capable of writing. why not have students submit articles as part of a program at the schools. Why not feature prominent persons in Tobago as a monthly column? Why not have expatriate Tobagonians submit articles? There is a lack of quality images. No features?

Why not have educators who have seen the change of Tobago over the years that are lucid and eloquent [I KNOW they are] share their thoughts on the progress of Tobago? Why not have them speak of changes in their areas of specialty. Why not a recipe area? Cause I KNOW we can cook.

Why not feature a food segment showing our traditional fare that EVERYBODY on STORE BAY talks about when they come to visit. Interview entrepreneurs who have built their life in Tobago and will have stories to share that will be of interest to other younger Tobagonians.

Why not reflect the advances that are common place in Tobago. They could even have a pictorial article. Show it as it was and now is. Regardless of its ownership and circulation the newspaper is a reflection of us. A signal to the world.

And in my humble opinion right now it suggests a people stuck in a situation of antiquity and lack of progress. A fact that I know to be inaccurate and untrue. We speak of brain drain. I myself have been accused of being a part of that problem. But there is ENOUGH in Tobago right now to do MORE than what I see.