April 24, 2007

Johnson Will Take the Leap
The Pioneer Press reported on the decision of Gopher Men's hockey star Eric Johnson to move up to the NHL and sign a contract with the St. Louis Blues. Johnson, a freshman at the U of MN, was picked first last June. "I mulled it over after I said no the first time," Johnson said Thursday. "I was kind of going back and forth, then decided this would be best. I wouldn't have said yes if it wasn't right for me."

The reporter got quotes from Johnson and coach Don Lucia. Those quotes are able to show the reader what Johnson is thinking, since the Gophers have had history with players leaving early to pursue dreams in the NHL. "Lucia, whose team lost star forward Phil Kessel after just one season a year ago and also lost sophomore Kris Chucko and juniors Ryan Potulny and Danny Irmen to pro signings, has become accustomed to early departures, and the coach recruits with that in mind."
The quotes from Lucia are representative of how the Gopher hockey team is feeling. Lucia's quotes show the support from Lucia, but also give a small undertone of frustration. "It's good news for him, bad news for us," Gophers coach Don Lucia said. "
The Star Tribune shows Johnson as more confident in his decision. "I'm confident in my decision," said Johnson, a Bloomington native. "I knew either way I would be in a good situation, but I'm looking forward to a new challenge.""
The reporter also discloses the details of Johnson's contract, something the Pioneer Press did not do. The reporter also showed the support coming from Lucia. "St. Louis feels he is ready," Gophers coach Don Lucia said. "He's a big part of their future, and I'm sure they wanted to get him in there and start working with him. I can understand that." This quote and others in the story also show a small undertone of disappointment in losing another talented player to the NHL.

I think between the two stories, the Pioneer Press did a better job of disguising the frustration of Lucia. It is visible in quotes, but isn't put out there point blank. Both stories did a good job of not painting Johnson as a bad person for making this desicion and overall both were presented well. Some of the readers may feel angry at the decision Johnson made, but the reporters cannot trash a 19-year-old kid for trying to reach his dream. Both stories did a good job on this subject and one was not better than the other.

April 17, 2007

What might be the final game of the season
The Star Tribune reported on what the Minnesota Wild need to do in order to win their game against the Anaheim Ducks. The Ducks lead the series 3-0 and could eliminate the Wild. The Wild need to step up their power play because they are 1-for-15 in the playoffs. They also need to figure out how to skate through the neutral zone and into the offensive end to get the puck deep. The top scorers on the Wild need to score. They have combined for 2 goals, and 1 assist. The go-to guys are going to have to battle through many things in order to get to the net. The Ducks have four soild defensemen so that will be a task. "Parrish said: "We don't care where the goals come from. It's the wins. There is only one stat that counts in the playoffs and that's wins."
And right now, the Wild has zero."

The reporter used alot of metaphors that are typical in sports reporting. "Trying to skate through the Anaheim Ducks is as maddening as trying to change lanes on the 405 late on a Friday afternoon." The reporter also got comments from Wild players and coach Lemaire on how each of those things can happen. This is interesting to read because it connects the reader with the team and gives insight into their strategy. Alot of the terminology would be confusing for any reader that is unfamiliar with the game of hockey; like "neutral zone" or "offensive zone." This story would not make sense if the reader doesn't know a little bit about hockey.
The Pioneer Press also covered this upcoming game. More sports adjectives are used. "Gaye Stewart shares NHL history with J.P. Parise as emotional touchstones for a generation of teams facing imminent doom and grasping for means to scale the Everest of playoff deficits." This article focuses more on how only two other teams have come from behind 3-0 to win a series.

Both newspapers took different approaches to what could be the final game for hte Wild in the 2006-2007 season. The Star Tribune took the direction in what the Wild could do to improve their game and squeak out a win. The Pioneer Press took the direction of comparing the WIld to the only two teams who have come from behind to win the series. This direction is over-used and any team that is down in a series is comaperd to these two teams. I liked the Star Tribune article because it was more optimistic and gave strategy on how the Wild could win. The Pioneer Press had a depressing feel to it since it pointed out only two other teams have gone on in the playoffs when they were in the same position as the Wild are.

April 15, 2007

crime reports

I went to the University of Minnesota Police Department and they said that many journalism students come into the station to get crime reports. They handed me a stack of reports that I could chose from. I picked one about a lady who was stopped because she didn't stop at a stop sign. The other one I picked was a report about a stolen cell phone. The process was very easy beceause the people at the station I went to were very helpful since this happened on a regular basis. At a station where this didn't happen often, an average person might have some trouble because the people at the police station might not be used to people requesting crime reports. Some of the crime reports available were more serious than others, like someone getting pulled over for a broken headlight to someone getting arrested for a stolen car.

March 19, 2007

Gopher Men's Hockey Team Gets Number One Seed
The Star Tribune published an article about the Gopher men's hockey team getting a number one seed in the NCAA regional playoffs. They will play Air Force in Denver on Friday night. Coach Don Lucia is friends with Air Force coach Fank Serratore, who has teased Lucia about messing with Atlantic hockey because of the Gophers loss to Holy Cross last year. Air Force in the number four seed and will be using Holy Cross as a motivational tool, but so will the Gophers to remind themselves that they can have it all taken away if they don't work hard. Also in the bracket are Michigan and North Dakota. Since the Gophers are the number one ranked seed, they should have played the No. 16 seed but since neither Denver nor Colorado College made the field, the selection committee thought it was best to put Air Force in Denver.

The reporter starts the story with a small story displaying the friendship of the two coaches and wraps up the story with more commentary about the friendship. "Considering they are best friends, Carol Serratore, a St. Paul native, and Joyce Lucia likely will sit together in the stands when their husband's teams face off Saturday. Likewise, the coaches will have their time together when the work is done." This brings the story full circle and gives it a lighter touch. The reporter doesn't show any bias as to what team will win, even though the reporter is writing for an audience consisiting of mostly Minnesota residents.
The Pinoeer Press also reported on this. The reporter took a different approach, which was that the Gophers won't have an easy path to the Frozen Four. The reporter outlines how the Gophers got to the point they are in and he uses a nut graph to tell when the Frozen Four is. "The winners will collide at 5 p.m. Sunday for the right to advance to the NCAA Frozen Four on April 5 and 7 in St. Louis." The reporter gets alot of quotes from Lucia and some of the players. The awards the team has won so far are also added to this article.

I liked the Star Tribune article better because it had a lighter feel during a very intense situation. Although it lacked many quotes, it still gave the important information and let the reader know what was going on. Since I follow Gopher hockey, I know about the awards they have won and what they could accomplish the rest of hte season, so it was nice to see a different side of the upcoming game. The Pioneer Press article was very straight forward and gavea lot of facts. It wasn't very interesting to me, since I already knew them.

February 22, 2007

Vikings and the NFL Draft
The Star Tribune reported on the many choices that the Minnesota Vikings have in the NFL draft. They Vikings have the seventh overall pick and NFL Network draft analysis Mike Mayock makes many comments on what the Vikings should do. One possibility is that the Vikings pick a wide receiver that they need, says Mayock. The story reports on the potential draftees and what the Vikings could do.

The article used only quotes from Mayock and this gives a skewed view of the Vikings. The audience is being forced to read only one opinion. The reporter didn't quote anyone assiciated with the Vikings team. This story doesn't show a thorough search because no one else's opinion is give to contrast with Mayock.
The Pioneer Press also reported on the Vikings picks for the NFL draft. Mike Mayock is named in the lead of the story and this puts alot of emphasis on his opinions. "The NFL Network's Mike Mayock believes the Vikings are in position to select one of a handful of elite players in the April 28-29 draft." The reporter also quotes Kiper but the main focus is on Mayock's opinions. No representatives from the Vikings team are quoted.

I think both stories do a poor job because they only give the opinion of one person. This forces the reader to pretty much take on that person's opinion because no other side is shown. Mayock does give many different options that the Vikings could take, but it would have been nice to read what other people thought, if they agreed or disagreed. To make the story even better, someone from the Vikings organization could have been contacted.

February 16, 2007

Twins talk contracts

The Pioneer Press reported that the Twins have signed Michael Cuddyer in a one year $3.575 million contract. This came only minutes before the deadline. This followed the signing of Joe Mauer to a $33 million four-year contract earlier this week. The Twins wanted to sign Mauer, Cuddyer and Justin Morneau during the off season, but all of them filed for at least $ 1 million more than the Twins offered them. The contracts for Torii Hunter, Luis Castillo, Carlos Silva and Ramon Ortiz expire after the upcoming season, which add up to $25.2 million. The Twins would also like to extend the contracts of Johan Santana and Joe Nathan.

The reporter faced the challenge of staying objective in this story. It is great the the Twins signed Mauer and Cuddyer but with many other Twins players contracts expiring the Twins financial situation could be in jeopardy. The reporter used an hourglass type of story. This kept hte most interesting information in the beginning of the story and less important things at the end. The reporter also gave a time line of when all of the contract negotiations happened, which was some of the less important information.
The Star Tribune also reported on recent Twins activities. The reporter focused more on the contracts that will expire after the season. The reporter got alot of supporting quotes from General Manager Terry Ryan that helped give the Twin's point of view on the upcoming contracts.

I think the Star Tribune did a better job because the reporter gave the overall picture of what is going to happen in the future. The reporter also didn't imply that there might be some drama with negotiation talks because the Twins will have to pick who they want to stay and who they can let go or who they will be willing to pay more to keep.

February 7, 2007

Mercury spill
A mercury leak has closed a school in New Brighton. A school worker is thougt to have brought a box of science equipment to a St. John the Baptist School teacher and when the worker removed that equipment, mercurt leaked from the box, according to Principal Sue Clausen. This happened in the afternoon on Tuesday and the students were asked to leave their backpacks and shoes in the school to be tested for mercury.

The reporter didn't tell the reader how the Mercury was spilled until the fourth paragraph and even then it was just metioned. In the eighth paragraph, the full story is told, according to the principal. The story's lead also could have been more interesting.

The Pioneer Press also wrote a story about this event. The story was much shorter and told what happened in the first couple paragraphs. The reporter attribute authorities instead of the school principal when describing waht happened. It would make the story more credible if those authorities were mentioned.

I think the Star Tribune did a better job covering the spill. The reporter told of what happened and what the effects were, like students having to leave their backpacks and shoes at the school. It also tells the impacts of coming into contact with mercury over a long period of time.

January 30, 2007

Girl dragged under van

After seven years Maria Reyes and Antonia Carrera met again. After Carrera and her husband witnesses a tan van hit and drag a sixth grade girl for about 500 yards, Curt Brown with the Star Tribune reported(, they visited the 11-year-old in St. Paul's Regions hospital on Monday. They realized both Reyes and Carrerea had taken a parenting class together seven years prior. On January 29, 2007, Gladys Reyes was crossing Wentworth Avenue in West St. Paul with a friend when the accident occured. The Carreras forced the van to turn into a parking lot. The driver took off on foot and poilce tracked him with police dogs. The suspect, who is being held in the Dakota County jail, wasn't supposed to be driving.
Reyes suffered severe injures and many people pray for her recovery. "Gladys is a permanent fixture around here," Jill Garibay said, adding that the girl was so welcome in their home that she could enter without knocking. Gladys never missed a chance to help others, from unloading groceries, to helping Garibay's own children clean their bedrooms, to baby-sitting with other children in the neighborhood, Garibay said, reported Brown.

The lead isn't strong to match the importance of the story. One difficulty with this story is not to make the suspect sound accusted. It is tough in a situation like this to remain 100 percent objective, since some one was hurt. The reporter used attribution well to show opinions of the victim. This allowed opinions of the victim in the story without the reporter writing them.

The Pioneer Press also reported on the accident ( Brian Bonner, the reporter, did use a strong lead, even though it contains an opinion: "An 11-year-old girl may be alive today because a Good Samaritan saw her being dragged underneath a moving van and took bold action to force the van's driver to stop." The victim might be alive without the Good Samaritan. This is a tough situation because someone was hurt, but the reporter has to continue to stay objective. Bonner mentions the name of the accused in the sixth paragraph. Bonner does not use many quotes to show the personality of the victim, but the police chief is quoted on how the girl is doing.

I think that the Star Tribune reporter did a better job with showing the kind of person the girl is. He attributed the quotes well and correctly. He also didn't mention the name of the suspect, which won't lead to premature accusations. The lead for the Pioneer Press story grabbed my attention more, but overall, contained very little information about the people involved.

January 23, 2007

The Star Tribune reported when a person is flying into the United States from Canada, they will need a passport. The rule is put into effect on January 23, 2007. The State Department is optimistic about the number of people who will follow this rule because many have already registered and gotten their passports.
The reporter gave the basic information and it was clearly stated.No jargon was used to confuse the reader. His/Her verbs are active, but there are no quotes from anyone. How do travelers feel about this change in poilcy? How are officials going to handle people with forgotten passports?
The Pioneer Press used more information than the Star Tribune. They included more information about the change in policy. For example, the Pioneer Press states "new rules take effect today requiring everyone traveling by air between the U.S. and Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean and Bermuda to present a valid passport upon arrival in the U.S." Where as the Star Tribune states "new rules kick in requiring all travelers flying back into the U.S. to have a passport." The Pioneer Press also gave information on how to get a passport and how much it would cost. The Pioneer Press also states what would happen if a person forgot to get a passport compared to the Star Tribune who states "there will be a trial period for those who don't have the proper documentation." The Pioneer Press also shows why this change is taking place when the Star Tribune has no mention of why this poilicy is changing.
The Pioneer Press did a better job informing the population. I think it was very helpful to give information on how to get a passport, what happens if you forget your passport, and why this change is taking place. The Star Tribune gave a brief summary of what was happening but I felt I got a complete picture when I read the Pioneer Press' version.