Thursday, June 26, 2008

Going back to 1971

From Howard Owens: Spare me the fancy redesigns and give me some text to read.

Among the gems:
Spare me the big graphics and four-column photos and color splashes. Stop trying to turn your print front page into a web page.
...If they want timeliness, they’ll go online.
...News isn’t about a demographic (as in, “How do we target women, age 24 to 35, with one child and two cats?”)
...The print product should provide context and a moment’s respite. The online product should say, “this is what is happening now.”
...Try digging into your archives and looking at your newspaper from 1971. Make your 2008 paper look like that.

You know, this sounds nearly right to me. I want the background and the ads (and comics, and recipes) from the paper that I get delivered by mail late in the day, and don't expect it to give me breaking news. But I also don't want briefs about national/international stories I already know about. I need the local news, the analysis, the interesting stories about people and places around here. I need that 1971 newspaper.

(And I liked that 'timeliness' quote better when I thought it said 'timelines'....)

On another front, I was impressed by this posting from the Scholars and Rogues blog: A progressive for our times. What a graphic demonstration of how much our politics has deteriorated over the years, when Richard Nixon (!)...would be more progressive than either the Republican or Democratic nominees today.
I guess that's why I find the New Nixon blog so fascinating.....I sure couldn't say I am nostalgic for those times but I'm afraid we didn't learn anything along the way.

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