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Natural Awakenings Atlanta

Letter from Publisher: More Online

Aug 01, 2020 09:00AM ● By Paul Chen
You may notice something different about this issue’s table of contents—we’ve added a second page! And it’s entirely focused on what’s available to read online at

The truth is, we’ve always had new monthly content that only exists online; we just haven’t promoted that content—until recently. With the upgrade of our website in February, followed by the explosion of issues presented to us by the pandemic, our shift in resources towards online has accelerated.

First and foremost, we want to make you, our readers, aware of content that doesn’t appear in print. We get lots of good material from Natural Awakenings Corporate that we don’t have enough room for in the print magazine, and we anticipate that local contributions will grow over time, thereby increasing the portion of content that lives exclusively online.

We’re also experimenting with developing video articles. In fact, we are pleased to announce our first one: Lockdown Prompts Inward Reflection. [] While we’ve reassigned writer Noah Chen to produce more videos, it remains to be seen if this will be a sustainable practice. We are hopeful and optimistic.

Online Community Directory and Calendar

Our new web platform has two more features we hope to nurture into an exceptional value to our readers: the Community Directory and the Calendar.

The Community Directory is the online version of the Community Directory at the back of this magazine; it is akin to the Yellow Pages for businesses and organizations in the conscious eating, natural health and personal evolution spaces. We intend to grow the Directory to the point of being recognized as Atlanta’s #1 source for residents to find the practitioners, businesses and communities they want and need to help support and accelerate their awakenings in hearts, minds, bodies and souls. Please check it out! []

The second feature, the Calendar, hasn’t been turned on yet. Aside from the fact that there simply isn’t the same volume of events to promote because of the current pandemic, we’re also a very small staff, and while we’re anxious to introduce that feature, we simply don’t have a time frame for it yet.

We fully expect the Community Directory and the Calendar to become robust resources for our readers for the very simple reason that we offer FREE listings in both to solo practitioners, businesses nonprofits, and even governmental agencies.

A Word About Sponsored Content

When you visit, you also might notice articles labeled “Sponsored Content.”

In fact, we have two types of sponsored content online. The first—and more common—gives local companies the opportunity to choose a department to associate with and sponsor to help promote their brand. For example, Santosha Studio, an Atlanta yoga studio, sponsors our online Yoga Department.

In addition to departmental sponsorship, businesses and organizations can sponsor individual articles and editorial projects. Nuts ’n Berries, for example, sponsored our April listing of farms offering community-supported agriculture programs.[]

The second type of sponsored content consists of advertorials, the content that comes directly from advertisers—not our editorial team. The truth is, we wouldn’t label advertorials as “sponsored content” if we could avoid it, but due to limitations in the web platform itself, we aren’t able to replace the phrase “Sponsored Content” with “Advertorial.” But, in the meantime, and for transparency’s sake, you will see “Advertorial” right after “Sponsored Content.” It’s not ideal, but it is a simple workaround for now.

If this discussion strikes you as being “in the weeds,” it’s because we pride ourselves in adhering to a high level of journalistic ethics, which includes being very clear about where information is coming from. While we want all of our advertisers to succeed, we certainly don’t want readers to mistake content that advertisers place for content generated by the writers and editors of Natural Awakenings.

Integrity and trust are paramount to the way we do business every day, and we want readers to trust that we will always do our best to publish responsibly.
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