I  have been a member of the media since February 1973. Yes, 44 years next month. A lot has changed. Technology has been the driving force behind the biggest changes, but changing social attitudes has probably been the hardest adjustment.

The line between the public’s right to know and the privacy of the individual has become very blurred for some in the media, both those reporting and those who are being reported upon.

I wanted to address this because some people I have written about in this column in recent years believe I have crossed a line … I disagree. I have no interest in anyone’s private life, but their public life is a different matter. There are times when these two certainly cross paths, and decisions have to be made. I don’t have a personal agenda against anyone, and I believe my judgment has been fair in the past, and will continue to be so. Trust me, I won’t be camping out on a Wyndham councillor’s front lawn or driveway hoping to catch them out in any way, or door-stopping their family for a comment.

I don’t write gossip or rumour, but I do write my opinion on the facts I have at my disposal. I have got it wrong on a few occasions, and I have willingly owned up to that … a fact some people choose to overlook.

So let’s start the new year off on the right foot. I will continue to write my views on events, people and progress of life in the city of Wyndham, and life in general – you can agree or disagree; I welcome both, that’s why my email address appears at the bottom of the column, and why I give no credence to anonymous responses. If you are going to go to the trouble of expressing your thoughts, put your name to it, stand by your beliefs.

I appreciate different points of view and I think vigorous debate is a good thing, as long as it does not become personal. Those who revert to name-calling and the like get none of my time; I have better things to do. I don’t apologise for my opinion because it is just that – one man’s thoughts. I look forward to bringing you my thoughts during the coming year, and hearing your news and views.

If you have any news or events, let me know at kevin@howdypartnersmedia.com.au.