The Badger Herald is taking out the trash.

Let me explain.

First, let me welcome you to the pages of The Badger Herald; University of Wisconsin’s leading daily, digital-first, fully independent, student-run news organization.

This year at the Herald I am appointing a garbage editor. In the four years I have called The Badger Herald office my second home, one internal issue consistently piles up: overflowing trashcans of left-over Noodles & Co., Los Gemelos, Asian Kitchen, coffee cups, Daily Cardinal newspapers. You name an object and it has probably fed our trash monster.

The solution: If any of the Herald’s editorial sections — news, opinion, arts, sports — cannot prove to our readership that our content is interesting, pertinent and enlightening, that section gets to deal with the trash and its fruit flies. If that doesn’t apply to any section, I’ll do it myself.

Any digital-first media organization that is convinced community engagement is not important is not, in fact, digital-first. The Badger Herald cares about page views, yes. But we hold them to a high standard. We want people to come to our page, and stay on our page, and then leave empowered because they learned something new.

That’s why we do it.

Our online platform will be home to all of our coverage, from breaking news to interactive feature pieces, columns, sports recaps, scathing album reviews, social trend pieces and the list goes on. As for our physical copies, we will continue printing twice a week, with a weekday edition that will hit the stands Monday and a weekend edition for Thursday. Our print edition will strive to give you a new angle and context to the stories you have been following online throughout the week. Our Thursday edition will also include a page from our partners The Madison Misnomer and a revamped page of Shoutouts.

In the spirit of furthering our involvement with the University of Wisconsin community, we will continue to strengthen our presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and even Snapchat. Our marketing department’s street team will work closely with our social media coordinators to ensure that both our content and the Herald brand are accessible to the community.

A stellar management team will uphold our high standards, including returning Managing Editor Katie Caron, whose incredible journalistic talent, paired with an incomparably even-keeled management style, will bridge our print and online products. Heading the digital team will be Leopoldo Rocha, whose deep reporting roots and understanding of the Herald product will maximize the online platform.

With constant innovation and experimentation — the Herald’s inherent mode of operation — we will go through growing pains and learn along the way. Nevertheless, we will always strive for quality reporting and forward-thinking presentation.

We invite any and all students interested in getting involved to stop by our offices at 152 W. Johnson St. for one of our four open houses Sept. 4, 7, 9 or 10 at 7 p.m. We are always looking for new talent to write, photograph, design, code, copy edit or film.

Join us on our journey; I just took out the trash. It’s 2014, and The Badger Herald is going viral.

Tara Golshan, Editor-in-Chief