Monday, November 12, 2007

review of Zephyrus

I would first change the cover story...I haven't even read it yet and that is exactly why I think it should be changed. It just did not interest me! Of course it is news but I don't think it merited the front page and much less such a lengthy report. Anything from the culture section would be better than telling us about the new designs for the 35 w bridge. Other than the fact that it is just not all that interesting to most Edina High scholars (it might be to their parents) the story is old. The fact that the have their first plan for the rebuilding of the bridge is an update to an old story at most. It certainly isn't a story by itself. The lede photo is also disappointing because it isn't even a photo they took... they got it from a website! It goes with the story but it's not the first thing I would put in the paper. Instead of having the 35-w story front page AND above the fold, the staff at Zephyrus should have switched it with the Thanksgiving food shelf story. There are a couple reasons for this... number one; there might not be another place for the 35-w story in the paper. It doesn’t exactly fit under culture, sports, or opinions (it might however be replaced with any other story from the news section or even the on story in the features section). Even though Jerry Seinfeld visiting Edina might be a little more interesting and front-page worthy (for EHS that is), a story about new plans for the 35-w bridge could not exactly take its place next to Hannah Montana and the Jonas Brothers. The second reason for simply moving the food drive story to the top and the bridge story to the bottom is that Edina families are closer to home! It's got proximity and therefore more newsworthiness (especially since the bridge story has neither timeliness, [close] proximity, nor even much consequence for most students here.) SO even though the story about 35-w can't really replace any of the stories that could replace it, it can at least be moved from above the fold, to below it. Another advantage to putting the food shelf story first is that the lede photo would actually come from a student here at EHS and that ties the story to us students closer than a random photo from somewhere online. Another problem I have with the front page stories is that both of them start off badly. The story about the bridge starts off with not one, but two questions in their lede, and the story on Edina food drives begins with the word "imagine." This is exactly what we are trying to avoid in our stories... The basic information in both stories, however, is mostly at the beginning and not hard to find. One thing I have always liked about Zephyrus is that they put an Inside section at the top of the front page to give us an idea of what other stories are in the paper. I always look up there first to see if there is anything that strikes my fancy right away. The letter to the editor portion of the paper made me angry. It was as if they were simply telling the girl to quit her whining and leave them alone. Trevor’s article was obviously offensive and responding to the complaint with excuses instead of apologies is a prideful thing to do. It makes me want to use their paper as kindling in my backyard! Anything but actually read it again. I wasn’t really impressed with Zephyrus this month. It’s really easy to find things wrong with it, especially after having taken this class for just a quarter.

1 comment:

Mr. Hatten said...

Thanks for using elements of news, the lecture on how to write a lede and news judgement (gatekeeper theory) all together in your analysis. It shows a nice synthesis of class and reality. I also thought your reasoning was logical and based in our journalism text. Well done!