1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Design - The good, bad and ugly

Discussion in 'Design Discussion' started by Write-brained, Jun 13, 2007.

  1. VJ

    VJ Member

    There's nothing in particular wrong with modular design, it's a blessing though because for smaller papers and less experienced designers, not having a model or template to follow can result in some nasty pages. But once you get a certain amount of experience and skill, I think papers like the Pilot show that it's not the end of the world once you take the handcuffs off.

    But to suggest that Harrower's book is somehow bad for newspaper design, that's just dumb.
  2. Speaking of the Pilot. Here's some more before and after. Still hate the flag font. (As an aside, I don't remember the Pilot not using modular design.)

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2014
  3. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    I'd like to see a more authoritative "sports" folio. It's a bit too Kate Moss-y for me. All in all it's a strong effort.
  4. The Globe and Mail for our Canadian friends ... from the same newsdesign.com blog

  5. Washington Post sports front. Clean, simple, great photo.

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2014
  6. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    Yes, it is clean.
  7. Willie-Butch

    Willie-Butch Member

    I don't get the hatred for rails on the cover. It's nothing more than a way to give readers more information on the cover, because we all know how lazy they have become. As long as it's not a bulky eye sore, I think they're fine.
  8. VJ

    VJ Member

    It also depends on the size of the paper/section. If you have enough content to fill it like The Post does, that's one thing. But for smaller papers to use it and fill it with random wire nuggets seems pointless to me.
  9. Willie-Butch

    Willie-Butch Member

    The size of the paper shouldn't matter. The only thing that matters is if you have enough to fill the rail. They don't all have to be teasers. Even a 6-page section could pull it off. It also depends on how many briefs packages you have inside.

    I like the way the Post does it, especially the scorelist from MLB, NBA or whatever.
  10. buckweaver

    buckweaver Active Member

    Yeah, there's that, too.

    I just don't like the left rail on most papers, and I especially don't like the "Scoreboard" feature that's a plain ripoff of USA Today (where it actually works because USAT is a national paper. There are maybe 10-15 of those across the country, and even the LAT, DMN, AJC, etc., are becoming much less national in scope now.)

    What I mean is, generally speaking, nobody's picking up a mid-sized 50K paper in SoCal or South Carolina to find out the Tigers-Indians score on the front page. It's a waste of space, especially if your paper's coverage is getting more intensely local (as more and more papers are.) It says: "We're trying to look like we're a one-stop-shopping paper for you ... but we're not." And how could you be, if your national coverage is at least 75% wire copy? Focus on what you do best. Include the national news, of course, but keep the focus on what you do best (and that's different depending on where you're at.)

    Anyway, the point is: I think most papers are well served by 2-3 good inside refers, maybe a Web refer or TV highlights and a section index. You don't need a whole broadsheet column for your rail. I like a bottom rail much better, where it might take up half the space.
  11. buckweaver

    buckweaver Active Member

    Ha! :D

    See, I like it in the Post, too. I like it in the LAT, NYT and USA Today. Papers that have a more national scope (and size, but mostly scope.) It fits there.

    It doesn't fit in the 50K Mid-Sized Metro that's never going to staff anything outside of their area (which is most papers.) It doesn't mean they're bad papers; it means they're not papers that people are going to pick up for top-notch national coverage, because they don't have the resources to do that.
  12. Willie-Butch

    Willie-Butch Member

    I don't disagree about having the rail at the bottom, which takes up less space.

    Putting MLB scores in a rail on the cover is one thing. Providing top-notch national coverage is another. If people want scores, why not make it easy for them and throw them on the rail? If they want to know what happened, they can flip inside and read about it.

    That being said, you're right about the level of interest in national news in the paper. People are getting that from TV and the internet. I'd imagine sports sections are becoming thinner and thinner. I'm still amazed at how many pages we have on certain days. It forces us to run national news that nobody cares about. Maybe that's a topic for another board.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page