December 4, 2008

Headline Blog

In headlines, we are meant to understand what the article is supposed to be about. It is also meant to be a way that the reporter or copy editor is able to find a way to make the article jump out at you. Headlines for me are super hard to write, and I hope that should I have to write them, I find a way to improve upon my skills. In looking at some different online media sites, I've noticed that some write headlines for their articles that are super short and some that are incredibly long. It can be difficult to decide what way works better.

The site that I check most often for news dealing with politics is a political blog put out by Time magazine called, "The Page." The headlines on this site are very short and easy to understand. One of them that caught my eye was an article that was headlined with, "Bushes buy Dallas home," and another that comes close to home, "Franken, Coleman Drop Some Ballot Challenges," is another good one. In reading this site, the headlines are always something that has caught my eye pretty quickly. I personally believe that the headlines are what keep me coming back to the site.

December 1, 2008

Ethics Blog

I believe that ethics in journalism is the most important concept within it. The Society of Professional Journalists Code of Ethics says it best in their four basic rules to abide by:
1. Seek the Truth and Report it
2. Minimize Harm
3. Act Independently
4.Be Accountable

These are the most important things a journalist can abide by in any case and especially while reporting. These rules talk about properly reporting the truth, not hurting those involved in the bad, acting in the best interest of all those around and not causing a conflict of interest, and finally being able to be the journalist that can abide by the standards we all hold for others.

Food Blog

To find good ideas for reviews, I looked at 3 different online sources., citysearch, and the city pages. offered reviews across the twin cities in all different areas of food, from restaurants all the way to a review of a wine and cheese shop. They used a star rating system out of five stars and included a brief description as to why. Yelp was also really cool because it showed how to get to each of these places that they reviewed as well.

Citysearch was really cool because it allowed the consumer to search for restaurants based on how they want the restaurant to cater to them whether it be cost, taste, or the atmosphere. Citysearch also offered reviews on many many other kinds of restaurants.

City Pages has a variety of different food reviews in the magazine and offers what they recommend as "best of" restaurants. I think that that is really cool because it allows you to read positive reviews about restaurants that you may want to try. Also there are many reviews in each magazine.

I think I like city pages the best for restaurant reviews specifically for the "best of" articles.

October 28, 2008

Business blog

I read articles from the Times, Fox News, and the Strib all focused on oil so it would be easier to spot similarities and differences.

All articles were from wired sources.
The articles were heavily focused on numbers and money.
Each are fairly short in comparison to most hard news stories.

The article's didn't all have a picture to compliment them, which I did not like too much.
The word choice on the two national articles were a little confusing which made them harder to understand.
Only the Strib article gave any background on the topic the article was on.

October 21, 2008

Opinion Blog

The articles I read were all very different. I read one from the New York Times, the Strib, and the Pioneer Press. I tried to get a different idea from each and I certainly did.

The Times column was very left slanted, which didn't surprise me. But, it was also very informative. I really liked the conversational tone it carried, and it included a good use of quotes. It was interesting to see Minnesota congresswoman, Michelle Bachmann make it into the article.

The Strib column surprised me because it was very formal, with no opinion-like was strange. Perhaps because it was an opinion exchange article, maybe thats why it seemed different. It was good and informative and read much like a news article.

The final column I read was cool because it was basically a sports wrap with opinion thrown into it. I really love sports so this was great for me to read. It had a great tone, was conversational and even talked about our nationally ranked Gophers!

October 14, 2008

Slide Show Blog

Star Tribune


New York Times

Minnesota Public Radio

I looked at three very different slide shows and what I noticed was surprising. The only slideshow that was teamed up with a story was from MPR. The other two were just coverage from an event with a lead and nut graph. MPR gave three photos from a man’s new favorite past time; bee-keeping. This was cool because it gave you a feel for what the man liked to do visually speaking, besides just reading the article. The Times had a slideshow from fashion week. It was interesting to see the new designs but there were no shots of the audience or the background, so all you were able to see was the finished designs which made it kind of boring to the eye. I also looked at a bridge slide show from the Star Tribune. These were pictures taken during the building process of the I-35W Bridge. It was neat to see how it changed and developed, but it would have been more interesting if a story followed.

October 7, 2008

Vice Presidential Debate CNN Beanstockd Sydney Morning Herald

I picked these 3 articles because I knew they would all have an extremely different view; one national, one international, and one independent. It was really interesting to read the three articles simply because they were so different. As far as style goes, CNN was easily the most comparable to how we have been learning to write. The SMH was very different and read very much like a fiction story. The article from Beanstockd read like an opinion piece, but also captured my attention nicely.
I for sure enjoyed the CNN article the most because it was the most informative. The other two articles really focused on the presence of Biden and Palin at the convention. While I do think this is a valid thing to talk about, I think the issues discussed in the debate were more important and more newsworthy.
I did not enjoy the fact that the CNN article used hardly any quotes in comparison to the other two articles. I believe that quotes add a lot of color and can really open up a story to more readers if it has more quotes in it. Surprisingly, the SMH had a lot of coverage of the debate and even provided supplemental videos to their article which I also thought was pretty cool.

September 30, 2008

First Debate Analysis

The three articles that I read about Friday’s debate were from the New York Times, Washington Post and the BBC. It was interesting to see how each article read very differently. The NYT article read very much like a basic news story. However, it seemed more dry than normal. All they did was give the facts about viewership on Friday’s debate. I thought it was strange that they didn’t even talk about what happened in the debate or give key points from the debate. Another thing that was strange was they just compared viewership from different debates in the past and said it was silly to have this debate on a Friday due to low television ratings.
I really liked the article that I read from the BBC. It had great color and was a completely different style of writing than I was used to. Instead of referring to a person solely with their last name, they said Mr. McCain or Mr. Obama. I like that. Another thing I liked about this article is the fact that they actually talked about different issues that were talked about in the debate like the bailout. They acknowledged what was happening in the debate instead of just predicting viewership.
The last article that I read was from the Washington Post. It, like the New York Times article focused mainly on information that it received from Nielsen Media Research about the debate. It just talked about how the ratings fell short of what was expected as the first presidential debate this election. Another thing I thought was strange was that half way through the article, they segued to talking about the ratings of an unpopular television show this season instead of continuing to talk about the debate.
Overall, I was a little disappointed in the news coverage of the debate. For all they talked about during the debate, you would think that more would be said in the news, but apparently not. Interesting.

September 23, 2008

Financial Crisis Article Analysis

Lindsay Barthel
Economic blog
9/23/08 Wall Street Journal New York Times Star Tribune

This was a hard topic for me to fully grasp for the reason that I do not really understand very well how the stock market works, but the news I get. I was very interested to see how each paper covered the economics of what was happening lately. Each article covered it in a different way.

First, the WSJ article read with very much like a money magazine to me. It had a lot of important names with big numbers and was hard to understand for me. I think this probably had the best detail of the economic troubles we are facing, but for someone with little knowledge of how the stock market works; it makes it a little more difficult. I think the coverage it gave was very good because it talked directly about the different companies that have been in trouble with their stocks. It also told us what happened in the situation, what is going on right now, and what might happen in the future because of it. I really liked this article.

The article from the NY Times was also full of facts and good information, but it differed from the first one in that it had more quotes from people and less figures. It definitely told us the money troubles the United States are in, but it also gave us some good quotes to help us understand a little better. I really like the fact that it is easier to read as well. I think that this newspaper is geared toward a bigger audience then the Journal is. I would say that there is some bias in the reporter because they do talk about putting a certain man in charge of the job, but the story calls him one of the worst people for the job. This story really dug deep and used a lot of sources from all over Wall Street, which I think helps them makes their case because it shows that they know what they are talking about. The information was solid and I liked this style of reporting.

The last article I read was from the Star Tribune. It had a different spin on it, and it was focused on what McCain thought about the economy right now. I think it is interesting that during this big political period the Star Tribune would write a story from a McCain angle. The story was full of quotes from McCain, and very bias towards him and his plan to fix this crisis. He thought that the plan created by the Bush Administration needed fixing. I think that this story does a good job of showing McCain as GOP thinking about the economy, but a poor job looking at the big picture. It is very biased toward McCain’s thinking. There is only one sentence about Joe Biden. I think that it’s interesting that this angle can be run in a newspaper during such a pivotal time in the political world. It was a very biased story, but had good quotes and was much easier to read for me. However, I didn’t like the bias of it.