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Date Posted: 06:13:13 08/08/16 Mon
Author: Geez, Post-Gazette...
Subject: Fugitive from quality

Take what could have been an interesting story about fugitives, and completely make it a muddled mess with that bad attempt at fancy-schmancy graphics and layout.
Halfway through, I stopped trying to figure out which window I had to scroll down through.
Really bad attempt to jazz up something that could have been interesting even with a simple layout.
I don't know when newspapers will get it through their heads that people want simple online presentations.
Stop trying to justify your jobs, social media. It just interferes with the writing.

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Replies:

[> Re: Fugitive from quality -- FaceTwitter, 22:00:05 08/08/16 Mon [1]

It is all about social media or is supposed to be. The P-G Deputy Managing Editor who just left knew more about social media than anything else. That was what the PG bosses wanted. Good ideas until put into practice.

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[> Try Fugitive from relevance -- Border Patrol, 14:25:21 08/09/16 Tue [1]

Right you are, Geez. The PG story overdid something worth reading by trying to make it too flashy. No argument there. It's like the Trib's overblown Carl Prine production known as "American Coyotes," a blatant play for awards. It was elaborate, flashy, full of Justin Merriman photos. A story like this is fine for the LAT, the WSJ, NYT or WaPost. As for its relevance to folks in Sheraden, Troy Hill, Polish Hill, Pitcairn, Bellevue, McKees Rocks and Plum Boro, the jury's out how many were moved to action or gave a damn about the awards the series won and the TTM egos those awards inflated.

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[> [> Re: Try Fugitive from relevance -- Border Patrol, 22:37:14 08/10/16 Wed [1]

Printy, that's not what I said.

I think the original poster who started this thread is a regular PG basher who has complained here before. This time they had a point. The PG graphic treatment mentioned interfered with the reporting. Some editors care more about graphics than news. All across the nation, in a dark time for the industry, great editors, reporters and newsroom web designers exist as well as far too many with skewed priorities and massive egos.

As a series, the Trib's "American Coyotes" hit all the marks. Prine did a good job and so did Merriman. But despite the in-depth reporting and photography, how was it germane to Western Pennsylvania? It wasn't.

Both papers should mobilize their respective (and finite) resources and focus on elaborate treatments dealing with local issues readers care about. If they want to do Times or Post-like presentations, aim them at their home turf. Neither Trib nor PG will ever be "national" papers, but the Times, Post, etc. can't cover Pittsburgh like the Trib or PG.

The ultimate goal of fancy, graphic-rich and overhyped stories no matter what newspaper does them is one thing: awards. Do readers care about awards? No. But editorial employees do. They use the recognition to burnish resumes. Editors invoke them to fend off possible budget cuts, layoffs or buyouts proposed by the corporate end. Marketing people invoke them to enhance a newspaper's stature in a time no one's assured of long term survival. If the Trib and PG want to do elaborate stories, let them serve readers with well-reported and well displayed local endeavors that inform first and dazzle second. Do I think they will? No.

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[> [> [> Re: Try Fugitive from relevance -- Oops, 13:01:14 08/11/16 Thu [1]

You were answering the guy below you. Posted in the wrong spot.

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[> Re: Fugitive from quality -- Printy McPrintface, 15:31:55 08/10/16 Wed [1]

You guys are right, the smart thing for them to do would have been to publish it straight and plain to A1 and worry about having people find it on the website later. In fact, why even print any story with images or a web presentation? The wonderful words crafted by the reporters are all that is needed to catch a reader's attention, right?

And Border, come on, you're saying that the NYT or WaPost can publish media rich stories but the PG and Trib can't simply because they're in Pittsburgh? Give me a break. The readers in Pittsburgh deserve as much effort to tell a well reported and good looking story as the readers in New York and DC.

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[> [> Re: Fugitive from quality -- TooMuch, 06:48:00 08/11/16 Thu [1]

The Trib and PG do not have the resources available to the Post or NYT. It's not even close.

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[> [> [> Re: Fugitive from quality -- Way TooMuch, 19:43:01 08/11/16 Thu [1]

The Trib and PG do not even have the resources available to survive long term, period. Over-hyped overblown stories out to get awards won't help. Wonder how long until the "For Sale" sign is out at one or both places?

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[> [> [> Re: Fugitive from quality -- Wishful Inking, 22:36:00 08/11/16 Thu [1]

One can aspire to be great by trying hard, or one can pretend to be great by wasting resources.

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