The long arc of our history paused for just a few seconds this week at the Vineyard Gazette office, when after months of internal planning, a new website was launched.

This marks the fourth digital overhaul since the Gazette had its first page on the worldwide web in 1996, and by far the most ambitious one. It comes at a time when the newspaper industry finds itself inalterably transformed by Google and Apple, tablets and smart phones, Facebook and Twitter. The Gazette embraces these changes and is committed to developing a digital news presence that is not just an adjunct to the newspaper but its next generation. With this new site we have focused on acquiring the tools to show the Gazette’s rich content to its best effect and to try out new ways of serving our readers and advertisers.

What remains unchanged is the newspaper’s commitment to giving voice to those who love the Vineyard. In reporting the news, the Gazette endeavors to put the bad in context with the good, to provoke intelligent discussion about issues that will shape the Island’s future, and to encourage the efforts of the many people, institutions and organizations who are working to bring about constructive change in our community.

We thank our wonderful staff and extended family of contributors for their loyalty and dedication through an exciting period of transformation as the Gazette expands its digital presence. But the most important people to any newspaper, digital and in print, including the Gazette, are its readers — and now we invite them to read our new site at Pardon any bugs. And tell us what you think.