Wednesday, February 01, 2006

A newsie day

Yesterday was one of those days when everything seems to happen at once. It is a nightmare for news editors who must decide which stories to put on the front of the newspaper each day. There were easily five and possibly six national stories deserving of Page 1 treatment yesterday. Let’s review:

President’s State of the Union address
Correta Scott King dies
Samuel Alito confirmed to the Supreme Court
Academy Award nominations announced
Last day for Alan Greenspan as chairman of the Federal Reserve and Feds raise interest rates
Enron trial has opening arguments
The Atomic Energy Agency reports that Iran has plans for nukes

That doesn’t leave any room for local stories, and most dailies insist on having at least one local story out front. It was fortunate for them that nothing big happened in Iraq yesterday. So what is a poor news editor to do? I was curious to see what the Express-News would do.

They went with a 5-story front with the SOTU story on top, a King feature anchored in the middle and the Enron and Iran stories running down the sides. They also decided to cram in a local feature story in the upper left column just for good measure. The Academy Award nominees got the top of the page banner teasing the story in the Life section while they also found room to squeeze in a tease below the SOTU story on the Alito confirmation. Greenspan and the Feds were relegated to the Business section with no tease.
All in all not a bad set of choices.

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