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no box scores

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by sbordow, May 9, 2008.

  1. sbordow

    sbordow New Member

    Hi. This is Scott Bordow from the East Valley Tribune in Arizona.
    Here's what has happened at our place the last couple of weeks. You tell me if we're on the cutting edge of sports journalism (I say this facetiously - sort of). We were told to cut 15 pages from our section every week and could only have two wire pages of copy per day.
    As a result, we've had to cut all wire agate, including box scores. As you can imagine, our phone hasn't stopped ringing with complaints. And as someone who still loves the feel of a newspaper in my hands in the morning, I can't blame the readers.
    What I'm wondering is this: As sections get smaller and more folks get their information over the internet, is this the way of the future? Will stuff like box scores, NBA agate, college football agate be cut out of papers?
    I hope not, but I have this nagging feeling that's the way we're headed.
  2. micropolitan guy

    micropolitan guy Well-Known Member

    Pissing off loyal customers is a great way to stay in business.

    Keeping track of the calls, and giving the list to the person who made this decision is about all you can do. I know another paper that tried this several years ago, caught tons of grief, and then added them back several months later.
  3. Clerk Typist

    Clerk Typist Guest

    It's the wave of the future and the future is now. Does your paper still have a TV book? Stock tables? Anything that can be found more up to date online?
  4. I hate the current prevaling wisdom (by management) that people can get stuff online, so we shouldn't waste our space with that stuff.
    So, now we're encouraging people to go other places to get their news intead of giving them everything we can?
  5. sbordow

    sbordow New Member

    We do have a TV guide. We eliminated our stock listings months ago and got bombarded by complaints, but management stuck to its guns. BTW: We cover the Diamondbacks home-and-road, so it hurts even more being in major-league city.
  6. wickedwritah

    wickedwritah Guest

    From experience, it seems like the prevailing wisdom is to run boxes and cut down on roundups.

    At least in my neck of the woods.
  7. zebracoy

    zebracoy Guest

    Our paper tried this just over a year ago and the complaints never stopped. Not sure exactly what the SE did - I think he logged most of the complaints and delivered them to the higher-ups - but they were back right away.

    Of course, it helpes that he was dead-set against that change in the first place. Looks like this might be the way to go. You might also try the argument that the box scores, especially for baseball, augment your team's coverage and severely hurt the product without them. Helps too if you cover the Suns/Coyotes/Cardinals.
  8. sbordow

    sbordow New Member

    Here's a link to what we did before and what we're doing now: www.sportsdesigner.com/ And, yes, the sports editor was against it and we cover the Suns and Cardinals. But, sadly, I don't think that's going to matter.
  9. If the complaints keep coming and the higher-ups won't let you go back to giving the people what they want, then they're just dumb.
    You can't please all the people all the time, but you should please all the people as much as you can. Otherwise, why would they spend their money on your/our product?
  10. VJ

    VJ Member

    I second the suggestion on cutting down on the roundups if it means keeping the boxes. There's no reason to run more than a sentence or two with each game, barring a no-hitter, 4 HRs, someone scores 60 pts, 5 goals, etc.
  11. Chi City 81

    Chi City 81 Guest

    That's what we do.
  12. forever_town

    forever_town Well-Known Member

    I agree with that.

    Sounds like the bean counters are just plain stupid if they're going to ignore torrents of complaints from readers.

    That just smacks of a store or a restaurant ignoring massive customer complaints. Well, guess what? Give people the option to look elsewhere for what they want and they'll go. And they won't think of coming back.
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