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Welcome to SXSW season.

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The Chronicle is going daily during SXSW on March 16, 17, and 18. This decision was not driven by advertising (though they're delighted with it) but out of editorial frustration. The Chronicle staff does so much prep work for SXSW, we offer such in-depth and comprehensive coverage, but, being weekly, we miss the action at the heart of the event. We get to prep the event but not report on it. For a few years now we've talked about how to remedy this situation. Over the past couple of years we've greatly expanded our daily Web coverage of the event. We offer regular reports on conference programming on all three events as well as reviews of the Film and Music Festivals. But still, something was missing.

On Thursday, March 16, we will publish our first daily. We will print 20,000 copies and distribute them downtown to hotels, restaurants, and clubs. On that day, we will also distribute the bulk of our weekly edition. Two Chronicles in one day. The staff is thrilled (okay, maybe thrilled is too strong a word). The Chronicle daily will offer coverage on panels and performances. We expect them to disappear quickly.

In this issue, we offer Tech Week, a special employment supplement. Put together by the heroic classified staff, it is a 20-page supplement (to be complemented by a Chronicle/SXSW job fair during SXSW).

Next week is the Musicians Register issue listing more than 1,400 local performing artists. This issue is used all year long, all around the country. The register is inserted into SXSW Music bags, and many go home with registrants. Now, of course, the register is also available on the Web, making it even easier to access.

Our SXSW coverage begins with the March 3 issue, which will focus on new media, highlighting many of the SXSW Interactive events. That issue also has an eight-page insert featuring a full film schedule, full music festival schedule, and complete details on SXSW Interactive. The March 10 issue will focus on film, offering comprehensive coverage of both the SXSW Film Festival and Conference. The issue has a 12-page SXSW insert with information on all three SXSW events. The Austin Music Awards issue, with extensive SXSW Music Conference and Festival coverage, will be published dated Friday, March 17, with some distribution the evening of Wednesday, March 15, and the rest distributed on Thursday, March 16.

The Austin Chronicle Music Poll ballots are currently being tabulated. Results will soon be compiled. The Awards Show (co-sponsored by KGSR-FM) lineup is in place. The show will be Wednesday, March 15, at the Austin Music Hall.

On Thursday, Friday, and Saturday mornings, March 16, 17, and 18, we will distribute a daily Chronicle with reports from the night before and previews of what's coming that day, as well as up-to-the-last-minute schedule changes.

The following week, the Chronicle schedule will be back to normal. The issue will offer even more coverage of the SXSW events, but after that, we promise to shut up about it, at least for a while. As always, the conflict of interest reminder that Chronicle publisher Nick Barbaro and I are directors of SXSW Inc. That's the notice for this season. end story

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

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