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Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Moderator1, Feb 7, 2007.

  1. Editude

    Editude Active Member

    One of my best friends in the business believes that because of its resources and non-central location, Orlando can focus on coverage that serves award judges rather than readers.
  2. ondeadline

    ondeadline Active Member

    If a section is more interested in awards than serving its readers, then that's sad.
  3. Birdscribe

    Birdscribe Active Member

    I read nearly all of them, so I speak from experience on this front. Steve Elling is one of the best 3-4 golf beat writers at any paper in the country. Period. Aside from being a top-notch writer who would be a great columnist at any paper, the guy was plugged in so well on the golf scene in what is the professional hub of golf in the U.S., it was ridiculous.

    And good luck to his replacement, who will have to start from ground zero with Isleworth resident Tiger -- never an easy thing for any writer to deal with.
  4. Rufino

    Rufino Active Member

    The show in question is a one hour show from 9 to 10 AM on WQTM 740 in Orlando. It's basically a Sentinel infomercial, and features Hoppes as well as Bianchi and frequent appearances by other paper staffers. I can't imagine doing that one hour is taxing Lynn too much other than having to just make sure the time is clear in the calendar each day.
  5. Frank_Ridgeway

    Frank_Ridgeway Well-Known Member

    If this is the case in Orlando, they'd hardly be alone. But, then, judges are so much more predictable than readers, and since we can't seem to find the magic answer to selling more papers, at least SEs can say to their bosses, "Not our fault -- look at all the APSEs we win!"

    I think APSE is the very worst thing to happen to sports journalism in my lifetime. This obsession with awards, especially section awards, has resulted in a culture of mimicry that has robbed many sports sections of their individuality and regional quirks. We have become lemming-like clones that format ourselves into sterility. We have taken something completely unpredictable -- the day's news -- and hammered it into a blandness by squeezing news into formatted holes and building around features that lack urgency. And we wonder why readers find us boring.

    The Vanifesto said, "Emphasis will be placed on breaking news. Not just Orlando stories, but national stories too." Not being a regular reader of the OS, I am not sure how they struck a balance between this emphasis on hard news and "Our goal will be a major enterprise project for each day, complete with artwork or photos, starting June 1. To accomplish this, we will need to plan these projects out 100 days and more in advance."

    But I would hope that would mean that they were willing to scrap 100 days of planning in favor of breaking news when appropriate. The problem I see in a lot of sections is the mentality that we've done all this work on this enterprise story, so we'll keep it and just strip this breaking news across the top rather than giving it the impact display it deserves. Sometimes this is done for in-house political reasons -- a star wrote it, so we have to splash it. Sometimes this is done to fill an enterprise quota that will please either the newspaper's managing editor or judges or both. Sometimes this is done because of a misguided notion that readers already have seen all they need to see about the breaking story by the time the paper is delivered. Sometimes this is caving into the designer [/dyepack] because a magazine-style display would be inappropriate for a news story and the designer wants that portfolio. Whatever. It is garbage to lose this sense of urgency, and our cure for our perceived dullness is more dangerous than the original ailment.

    We need to scrap gimmicks and gadgets that deliver nothing but awards, and start focusing more on being newsy. That doesn't mean just plucking the wires, it means breaking news on beats and giving it the play it deserves. By necessity that will take its toll on design because we'll have to be willing late at night to tear up a centerpiece when the game is better than expected or an injury happens or we hear a big trade is about to happen. But it is the only way to deliver a vitality that will keep readers interested.
  6. shotglass

    shotglass Guest

    Just so YOU said it. ;)
  7. hondo

    hondo Well-Known Member

    He's good ... damn good. But don't get carried away. He wasn't breaking anything on Tiger that already wasn't on AP.
    And explain to me what exactly makes Orlando the hub of professional golf in the U.S.

    Let's see:
    USGA headquarters, New Jersey.
    PGA of America HQ, Palm Beach Gardens
    PGA Tour HQ, World Golf Hall of Fame, Jacksonville-St. Augustine area
    LPGA HQ, Daytona Beach
    Augusta National, well, Augusta, Ga.
    Royal and Ancient Golf Club, Scotland
    Orlando? Some Tour guys live there for the Florida tax break. And the big guy, one Eldrick Woods, is moving to south Florida (Jupiter) in the near future.
  8. fishwrapper

    fishwrapper Active Member

    Frank, I often agree with you...But...
    That wasn't Van.
    If you broke the story, you got the play. I can't tell you how many display centerpieces got bumped or broken up because of news. Both, local and national. Van was a NEWSPAPERMAN, first and foremost. The awards and accolades were byproducts.
  9. Frank_Ridgeway

    Frank_Ridgeway Well-Known Member

    Read it again. I wrote:

    I didn't say he didn't. I said I didn't see their paper enough to know, but this is what I hoped was the case.
  10. fishwrapper

    fishwrapper Active Member

    Fair enough. I'm here to tell you I/we did.

    (I didn't worked with Van in Orlando. But, his philosophy didn't change.)
  11. henryhenry

    henryhenry Member

    frank, you're posing an either/or situation
    it's a false choice
    you can do breaking news and long-range enterprise and they should co-exist peacefully, each enhancing the other
    not sure why you're so worked up about this
    and why belittle the awards? aren't they chosen by diligent thoughtful people? and don't they reward a high standard of journalism? sure, you can quibble about what is great, good and mediocre, but they get it right most of the time
  12. Columbo

    Columbo Active Member

    He must have made an exponential leap as a writer the past 7-8 years.
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