October 2012 Archives

Analysis: Multimedia content on P.O.S. tour cancellation

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In comparing two news organizations, a variety of similarities and differences came about in the announcement of rapper P.O.S. cancelling his music tour due to issues with his kidneys. Kare 11 and the Pioneer Press covered the story in different ways.
Kare 11, a news organization that is on television as well as an organization that posts their news online, posted a video to complement the news story. The article that was posted under the news clip contained nearly the same content as the clip. The clip, along with the words in the article, had a very emotional tone to the story. Readers and viewers are meant to feel sympathetic for the rapper and what he is dealing with. The clip also features video of the interview with the rapper. Viewers are able to see his emotions. This complements the article in a way to provide more emotion to the article than just reading it would have.
The Pioneer Press, a newspaper organization that also posts their content online, had a very different approach. The article was printed in their newspaper and then online. A visual clip did not accompany the article. No pictures were associated with the article. The article was about providing facts on the story. An emotional approach was not taken. The approach was strictly factual.

Hurdler Lolo Jones earns a spot on the U.S. bobsled team

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Lolo Jones was one of 24 athletes names to the United States bobsled team on Thursday in Lake Placid, N.Y., the Los Angeles Times said.
Jones is one of two athletes to make the teams who competed at the London Olympics in track and field, the Washington Post said.
Jones now has the chance to compete at the World Cup in order to earn her official spot to compete for the United States at the Sochi Olympics in the winter of 2014, the Los Angeles Times said. Tianna Madison, the other track and field Olympic athlete to make the team, will compete alongside Jones at the World Cup on Nov. 8, the Washington Post said.
Todd Hays, women's bobsled coach, invited Jones and Madison to compete for a spot on the team as push athletes, the Los Angeles Times said. Their job is to push the sled down the chute before jumping on the sled, the Los Angeles Times said.
Jones had a tough time at the London Olympics. She finished fourth in the 100-meter hurdles in London, the Los Angeles Times said. Bobsledding is a breath of fresh air for the athlete.
"I just came out here and kind of needed to get away from track for a bit, kind of wanted to get some motivation," Jones said, as reported in the Los Angeles Times.
Other athletes still need to compete for the spot as push athlete, so there is no guarantee Jones will make the team, the Los Angeles Times said.

Ice castle to be constructed at Mall of America

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A Mall of America parking lot will host a 40-foot ice castle this holiday season reports Kare 11 and the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.
Ice Castles, LLC plans to attract visitors from around the world by building their largest structure ever, Kare 11 said. Construction begins next month, said the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.
A Thursday news release from the Mall of America reports the structure will be available for visitors beginning late December and going through February, said the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.
This castle will be made of approximately one million icicles, said Kare 11, which differs from normal ice castles that are usually made out of ice blocks. The icicles are grown out of 4 million gallons of water, Kare 11 said.
The castle will feature tunnels, taverns, archways, and ice sculptures, Kare 11 said. LED lights will illuminate the caste at night, the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal said.
Viewing of the attraction will cost $5 for children and $10 for adults, the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal said.

New England braces for Hurricane Sandy

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Predicted to be the worst storm in a generation to hit the Eastern Seaboard, 50 million people could likely be affected by a rare giant storm led by Hurricane Sandy, the Star Tribune said.
Residents of several states are being urged by governors to move inland in preparation for the storm, said Kare 11.
The storm will likely create torrential rainfall and damaging winds over the course of several days, the Pioneer Press said. Waves may reach as high as 30 feet. The peak of the storm will arrive Monday or Tuesday, the Pioneer Press said. 50 mph winds are possible, Kare 11 said.
Hurricane Sandy is not the only storm that is causing concern. Hurricane Sandy is expected to collide with two winter storms that could potentially create one large storm, Kare 11 said. The storms, moving from the west of the United States, could pull in Hurricane Sandy and give it energy, the Star Tribune said. These storms could dump several feet of snow inland, the Star Tribune said.
Transportation is likely to be affected. New York City is considering shutting down public transportation, Kare 11 said.
As reported in the Star Tribune, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg warned residents of the upcoming storm. "This is a large, unpredictable storm, so be prepared for possible outages," he said.

Popeyes plans to take over 14 Twin Cities' metro KFCs

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National food chain Popeyes will face a bankruptcy judge next month to takeover 28 Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants nationwide, 14 of which are in the Twin Cities' metro area, the Star Tribune said.
The 14 planned restuarants would join the only Popeyes restaurant in the metro on Lake Street in south Minneapolis, the Burnsville Patch said.
KFC, a bankrupt franchise, intends to be involved in the possible takeover process, the Star Tribune said. The company, as reported in the Star Tribune, "intends to make every effort to see that as many restaurants as possible continue to operate as KFC restaurants with the same employee teams but under new ownership," the company said.
AFC Enterprises, Popeyes' parent company, has agreed to pay Wagstaff Management, KFC's owners, $13.8 million for the 28 locations nationwide, the Star Tribune said. The other 14 locations are in California, the Star Tribune said.

Free abortions extension a possibility in France

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The lower house of the French Parliament passed a bill that would allow for reimbursement of abortions for all and free contraception for all minors on Friday according to The New York Times and ABC News.
Currently, medical insurance in France pays for abortions in full for minors and the poor. Other women can be reimbursed up to 80% of the cost for the procedure, which can cost about $580, ABC News said. Contraception in France was partially reimbursed. If the new law passes through Senate, which is likely, minors between the ages of 15 to 18 would be able to receive free contraception, the New York Times said.
Many in France say not enough doctors provide the procedure, ABC News said. Other medical providers charge a large amount for the procedure, which the bill would not cover ABC News said.
France is one of the European countries to allow abortions for minors without parental consent, ABC News said.

Analysis: Lance Armstrong loses sponsorships

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The Wall Street Journal article "Nike Drops Lance Armstrong," by Vanessa O'Connell and Reed Albergotti, discusses various sponsors dropping Lance Armstrong after alleged reports Armstrong doped during his past cycling career.
The article begins by addressing the title and Nike dropping Lance Armstrong from their sponsorship. The article then moves on to report on the resignation of Armstrong as chairman of the Lance Armstrong Foundation. The press release is found on the foundation's website. The article then addresses RadioShack's decision to cut ties with Armstrong. Following this, the reporters give background on the reports of Armstrong's alleged doping.
The progression does not follow a logical progression. The title of the article is under inclusive as well. The article would be stronger if it followed a more logical progression.
The beginning of the article is strong. The allegations of doping should be further up in the article. Many readers may not have been aware of the allegations, thus unaware of the reasons companies are dropping Armstrong. After the background, RadioShack cutting ties with Armstrong would have been logical. Finally, Armstrong stepping down from his foundation would be best to close off. This would be a more logical progression in my mind.

Chaska teen's death by arrow an 'accident'

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Spencer Swanson, 16, of Chaska, died Monday night from injuries sustained from an arrow accidentally shot into his head Saturday, according to the Star Tribune.
Swanson was riding a bike when an unnamed friend accidentally shot him in the head with an aluminum shaft arrow, reports Fox News.
Swanson was taken to Hennepin County Medical Center on Saturday after the incident, where he died Monday night, the Star Tribune reports.
The boy has not yet been charged in the incident, and it is unclear whether he will be, reports Fox News. Fox News also reports the use of drugs and alcohol were not present in the case.
Fox News reports the boys were close friends who lived near each other. According to the Star Tribune, the incident occurred near their homes in Chaska.
According to the Star Tribune, Swanson attended the Integrated Arts Academy in Chaska, where he was a junior.
Brett Johnson, spokesman for Eastern Carver County Schools tells the Star Tribune grief counselors will be available for the students close to Swanson.
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family," Johnson said, as reported in the Star Tribune. "It's a tragic day for students."
According to Fox News, an investigation of the incident is ongoing.

Target's CEO, Gregg Steinhafel, announced Tuesday that Target would be matching online retailers' prices from Nov. 1 to Dec. 16 reported the Pioneer Press.
According to the Pioneer Press, the online retailers Target will match include Amazon.com, Walmart.com, Bestbuy.com, Toysrus.com and babiesrus.com.
While many stores match prices in store, it is "rare for stores to match online prices since they tend to be lower and fluctuate often," the Pioneer Press reported.
This new policy will be used to attract consumers and convince them to purchase products in the store reports the Los Angeles Times.
In the past, according to the Los Angeles Times, many shoppers use Target and other brick-and-mortar stores to look at certain items, then purchase the items online at home. Amazon.com is a huge competitor in the minds of executives at Target according to the Los Angeles Times. The newspaper reports Target is many times used as a "showroom."
Best Buy announced their plan to match prices for electronics and appliances, reports the Los Angeles Times. According to the Pioneer Press, Best Buy authorized its employees to match online prices in store during the holiday season.
Target has been implementing many new initiatives to keep their sales momentum through the holiday season reports the Pioneer Press. Target will also match prices in store from Nov. 1 through Dec. 24 reports the Los Angeles Times. The Pioneer Press also reports that Target will begin carrying luxury goods from Nieman Marcus at affordable prices. The Los Angeles Times reports that Target will provide QR codes on popular items allowing consumers to purchase items online from inside the physical store.
According to the Los Angeles Times, this holiday season marks a large push from all retailers to get consumers back into brick-and-mortar stores.

The NFL announced Tuesday that the Minnesota Vikings would play the Pittsburgh Steelers at Wembley Stadium in London in 2013 according to the Pioneer Press.
The game will take place on Sept. 29, 2013, in Week 4 of the football season reports the Pioneer Press.
This is the first time the Vikings have played in London since 1983, reports CBS News.
Mark Wilf, president and owner of the Vikings, believes this is an exceptional opportunity for the team.
"We are honored to represent the NFL on a global level, and we look forward to playing in front of our international fan base," Wilf said in a statement reported in the Pioneer Press.
The Pioneer Press reports the Vikings are able to host a game in London due to their flexible lease with the Metrodome in Minneapolis.
CBS News reports the Jacksonville Jaguars will host the San Francisco 49ers at Wembley Stadium in 2013 as well. This marks the first time London will hold two NFL games in the same year according to the Pioneer Press.

Support for identification cards for illegal immigrants residing in the Los Angeles community is growing, according to the Los Angeles Times.
According to the New York Times, the goal of issuing the identification cards is to allow illegal immigrants to open bank accounts and access certain services.
A City Council committee unanimously approved the plan that would allow private companies to create identification cards for illegal immigrants reports the New York Times. According to the Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles residents would not incur the fees for the plan. The private companies would charge $10 to $20 for each card.
According to the New York Times, New Haven was the first city to issue identification cards to illegal immigrants. Oakland and San Francisco followed suit. Los Angeles would be the largest city to allow for such identification cards.
The identification card would function as a debit card reports the Los Angeles Times. Card holders would be able to make purchases from the card, load it with money, and make reservations with the card.
While the identification card would be acceptable at many places, including banks, it would up to the Los Angeles Police Department whether the card would be an acceptable form of identification according to the Los Angeles Times.
The New York Times reports that many illegal immigrants carry around large sums of money. This identification card would allow them to put the money in a safe place, lowering their chances of being victims of robberies.
Support of this identification card is widespread, but many do not share the sentiment.
Ira Mehlman, a spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform, opposed the plan in the New York Times.
"This city has bent over backwards to accommodate people who are in this country illegally," Mehlman said. "If Los Angeles is going to be issuing government IDs, how do they know these people's true identities? They could be helping people establish a false identity."

Cuba's 'exit visa' a thing of the past

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The Cuban 'exit visa' will no longer necessary for Cuban citizens wishing to leave the country beginning Jan. 13 according to the New York Times.
The New York Times states that the visa restricted Cubans from leaving the country even for a few days. The new policy will allow citizens to leave the country with just a passport.
According to the Los Angeles Times, travelers can still be denied a passport for travel for "reasons of public interest."
The Los Angeles Times reports that Cubans can now stay out of the country for 24 months as opposed to 11 months.
This new policy is a step in the right direction according to the New York Times. After Raul Castro took over the Cuban government for his ailing brother Fidel in 2006, several changes have been implemented to better Cuban society, according to the Los Angeles Times. The Los Angeles Times reports Cubans can now buy and sell houses and own cell phones and computers.
According to the New York Times, the reason for such a policy is economic growth. The government hopes Cubans will leave the country to make money elsewhere and return to spend their money in Cuba. This in turn will boost the economy, reports the New York Times.
This new policy could pose a problem for other countries such as the United States according to the Los Angeles Times. The Los Angeles Times states "Under its "wet foot, dry foot" policy, the U.S. allows any Cubans who make it to U.S. shores to apply for permanent residence after a year of good behavior." It could be hard to decipher who is vacationing and who is trying to leave Cuba for good.
According to the New York Times, the new Cuban policy is still being studied by the United States, but for now the U.S. policy remains unchanged reports the Los Angeles Times.

Analysis: Coach Jerry Kill's seizure after Gophers' loss

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In the article published by the Pioneer Press, the author, Marcus Fuller, uses a variety of sources. Fuller names a total of three sources. The University of Minnesota press release is the first source. The press release gives specific details about the timing and location of the seizure, the current status of Jerry Kill, and when future information will be provided. This source is used toward the beginning of the article and is attributed well.
The second named source is Dr. Thaddeus Walczak who Fuller reports is a neurologist for the Minnesota Comprehensive Epilepsy Program. This source gives background information on seizures and relates it to coach Kill's condition. Walczak does not appear to work directly with Kill, but he was able to provide information to help the general public understand the situation. Fuller sets up the attribution before providing a quote from Walczak. Attribution preceding the the quote is effective for his credentials help assure readers that Walczak is credible.
Jerry Kill is the third named source. Kill's words from the press conference preceding his seizure were used in the article. The quote discusses the Gophers' loss to Northwestern. The attribution is in the middle of the quote and is effective for readers already know who Kill is.
Fuller spaces out the named sources throughout the whole story. The press release is at the very beginning of the story. Walczak is used multiple times in the middle of the story. Kill's quotes are the very last lines of the story.
Fuller's use of sources helps give the story credibility and reliability.

Gopher football head coach Jerry Kill suffered a seizure minutes after discussing the team's loss to Northwestern with the media at TCF Bank Stadium Saturday afternoon.
Kill appeared healthy during the postgame press conference, but University officials reported that he suffered a seizure after returning to the locker room according the Washington Post.
A University of Minnesota press release Saturday afternoon stated Kill was taken to a hospital by ambulance as a precautionary measure. The Pioneer Press reports he was alert and resting comfortably. The press release also stated new information would not likely be provided until Sunday.
Questions remain regarding whether or not Kill will be able to coach next Saturday's game at Wisconsin, however seizures have not held him back in the past according to the Washington Post. Kill, an epileptic cancer survivor suffered a seizure during the Gophers' 2011 loss to New Mexico State. The Pioneer Press reports Kill suffered approximately 20 minor seizures the week after the game. Kill checked himself into the hospital to receive medical attention.
Before the New Mexico State seizure, Kill has had three other seizures on game days reports the Washington Post. However, an incident relating to a seizure has never caused Kill to miss a game.
"What the hell am I supposed to do? Stop?" Kill said last year according to the Washington Post. "I mean, sit in the chair and wait for the next dang seizure to come along?"
The Pioneer Press states that defensive coordinator Tracy Claeys would take over as head coach for the 4-2 Gophers if Kill was unable to carry out his duties as coach.

Minnesota claims four meningitis cases

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A woman in her 70s is the latest in four cases of fungal meningitis in Minnesota as of Saturday afternoon resulting from tainted steroids.
Antibiotics and antifungal drugs are treating the hospitalized patient reports the Star Tribune. The other three cases of meningitis are women in their 40s. The Pioneer Press states two of the women have been released from the hospital and one is expected to be released soon.
New England Compounding Center in Framingham, Mass., produced the bad lot of steroids that have adversely affected 180 people from 12 different states so far, ultimately killing 15 reports Minnesota Public Radio.
According to the Pioneer Press, approximately 800 patients may have been exposed to the steroids, most of whom received the drugs as a spinal injection for back pain. MPR reports nearly all 800 have been contacted.
With so many receiving the drugs, this likely is not the last case.
"We continue to evaluate cases," Doug Schultz, spokesman for the state Health Department said to the Star Tribune, "so we wouldn't be surprised to hear about more cases in the coming weeks."
Medical Advanced Pain Specialists and the Minnesota Surgery Center are the two clinics in the Twin Cities said to have administered the drugs.
The general public is not at risk as this form of meningitis is not contagious.

The University of Minnesota Board of Regents approved President Eric Kaler's $1.18 billion biennial budget request on Friday.
According to the Minnesota Daily, Kaler requests Minnesota to commit an extra $14.2 million a year for the next two years. This commitment would provide an undergraduate tuition freeze that would save students approximately $2,500 over the course of four years.
The Star Tribune reports the University of Minnesota is asking for $91.6 million more in funding, and $42.6 million would be devoted to the tuition freeze.
The budget also included an "accountability fund" which is an amount set aside if the University completes a set of goals including raising graduation rates, increasing financial aid, and maintaining research and development within the University the Star Tribune reports. The University would need to complete three of the five goals.
Professors at the University of Minnesota highlighted research plans included in the budget. Jenna Ross of the Star Tribune reports "the U wants the state to bankroll $36 million in research on robotics, food security, treatment for brain disorders and microbes that rid water, soil and even humans of toxins." Minnesota wishes to be at the forefront of this developing technology. According to the Star Tribune, the University will use the money to partner with outside research companies.
The Minnesota Daily reports the budget request will go before the state legislature in January.

Shot fired at Denver Obama campaign office

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A shot fired at Obama's campaign office in Denver, Colo., Friday afternoon resulted in no injuries.
According to The Denver Post, the shot was fired at 3 p.m. and people were inside the office, but no one was injured by the single shot.
Raquel Lopez, spokeswoman for the Denver police reported to CNN that police do not have a detailed description of a suspect, but they do have a possible "vehicle of interest." According to the Denver Post, detectives are reviewing tape recordings of the incident and specific vehicle information cannot be released.
According to CNN, the Secret Service has not been involved in the investigation. The Obama re-election campaign also declined to comment on the incident.

Deadly car bomb suicide in Pakistan

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A suicide car bomb attack killed at least 17 people and wounded 40 in the tribal Khyber region of northwest Pakistan.
According to BBC News, the attacked occurred in the town of Darra Adam Khel near the office of tribal leaders. The attack was aimed at pro-government militia who are against the Taliban.
Responsibility has not been taken by a particular group, but the Taliban have been blamed for similar attacks, reports BBC News.
The blast killed civilians and local elders alike, along with destroying 35 shops reports The Guardian.
According to The Guardian, wounded victims were transported to the nearby town of Peshawar due to a lack of local hospital space.

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