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!

Need help with deadline issue

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by rgd, Jun 4, 2009.

  1. rgd

    rgd Guest

    I work at a daily newspaper with a 10:30 p.m. press run, meaning we rarely get a writethru -- if anything at all -- for night sporting events. For many events -- late college bowl games, NBA playoff games, night NASCAR races -- we get nothing for the next day's paper. The best we can do for the MLB team closest to here is that four-graf APNewsNow thing that moves soon after games. As for getting Thursday's NBA Finals game in print? Forget about it.

    Because we cannot count on event coverage to anchor our section, we put an emphasis on advancing events and features. Even then, not having quality event coverage in the section makes it feel empty.

    Any tips on how to make the sports section relevant?
  2. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    Lead with local copy. Only way the print product can stay relevant.
  3. I assume you're an eastern time zone paper?

    10:30 is tough. I'd say localize the NBA Finals through a feature. Can you send a reporter to a local sports watering hole and see how many are watching the Finals? Their reaction to the game.

    You're probably in that summer dead zone where you can do that and get more readers looking at that then the dreaded Double L gamer.

    Have some fun with it, depending on where you live like Ohio, maybe fans are bitter about the Cavs losing, in Florida are goobers happy with the Magic? Does it conjure memories of Shaq, Penny blah blah blah. Depending where you are, do people CARE about the NBA? Maybe there's a bunch of fans doing shots every time the word "Shaq" will come up in the Finals. In other words, make the best of it.

    Maybe you find some clown who went to the first Magic game in 1989, but now lives in Cream Cheese, Indiana and doesn't get to see them.

    Gold is where you find it, same goes for stories.

    As for the game itself, only the remaining few people who are 82 and without computers will be looking for the results. Trust me, the WWL will make sure we know who won, if Kobe went to the bathroom at halftime, they'll call in someone for useless analysis of how Stan Van Gundy panicked with two minutes left in the first quarter when the Lakers went on a 4-0 tear etc.
  4. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    That works for Game 1, maybe even Game 2 if you're lucky, but what about the other five or six games in the series?

    Ebby, there's not much you can do with a 10:30 deadline. Do what you can with local content and features, and get in whatever 6 and 7 p.m. baseball games you can.
  5. SouthernStyle

    SouthernStyle Member

    I'm confused. Do you have a 10:30 page drop/sports deadline? Or does the press run begin at 10:30? — meaning the sports deadline is little bit earlier.
  6. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    Do you have any local writers covering colleges and pros, or is it all wire copy?
  7. greenlantern

    greenlantern Guest

    That's rough.
  8. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member


    That is not a "deadline issue." That is newspaper journalism in 2009.
  9. deskslave

    deskslave Active Member

    I'm just not a big fan of these types of stories. I mean, how often can you do them? And what if, really and truly, no one at Local Watering Hole is watching? More often than not, the story that comes back is the same one that was assigned, just with more desperate-sounding quotes.

    You see these pop up all the time at Super Bowl time, and they're always the same. Like it's news that people are watching a major sporting event at a sports bar.

    Sorry to seem like I'm trashing your idea, Mike. I know it's one borne out of the need to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.
  10. apeman33

    apeman33 Well-Known Member

    Agreed. Profit margin is more important than content. My deadline is 11 p.m. CT. Try working with that when the local high school has a boys/girls basketball doubleheader. It's basically impossible. I've even considered postponing the game stories to the next day but I thought better because I'd rather have one publisher upset with me than the 2,000 readers we still have.
  11. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    Oh boy, another "dumbass in the bar" story. Shoot me now.
  12. Let me clarify, I never said the bar buffoon idea was a good idea, it was just an idea, which is what Ebby wanted with short notice. It would have been helpful to have some more info on what Ebby was facing such as the central time zone, that he had a D-1 school they covered, etc. Obviously if the Lakers or Magic had a player from that school I'm sure Ebby would have done something on that and maybe follow said player by writing off the TV, also not the best idea.

    If you did do something featurey the night of the game and were able to sneak the final score in the paper, then it may appease readers.

    Now, Ebby what did you do? Did you get the gamer in on time? Let me say I have no idea what time the game ended, nor do I care. Now that I live in the Orlando market I still don't care about the NBA and haven't for a long time. Note the sarcasm above I have for the WWL and their constant pushing of the NBA with meaningless crap they spew over the NBA.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page