Recently in Analysis Category

CAR Analysis

| 1 Comment

This WINK News story looks at educator voting, and challenges the notion that teachers represented a large voting block in Florida. The report used voting data to determine the voter turnout for educational personnel.

To do this reporting, the reporter had to be able to perform an effective database search to find the voting lists and voter information. The reporter might have also had to use statistical analysis to match information and determine demographic distinctions.

Finally the report needed to determine how many staff members lived in the district and were able to vote. The reporter would have had to use personal records to identify where people lived.

Diversity Analysis

| No Comments

A report from the Minnesota Daily covers the Indian Student Association (ISA) celebration of Diwali.

I spoke with Avanthi, a member of ISA, about this article because when I read it, I felt like it was a good representation of the holiday and its traditions, but I wanted to see how she felt.

She also said the group was well represented. We agreed that the story was told through quotes from members of the group. Observations that were made by the reporter were backed up with an explanation of their meaning. For example, the reporter explained that the two parts were to represent the fact that not everyone celebrates the same way. This was one observation that Avanthi felt was especially important to represent the holiday.

Numbers Analysis

| No Comments

An article from the Reedsburg Times Press effectively uses numbers to describe survey results about the education system in Wisconsin.

Since the article uses overwhelming and shocking numbers, such as cutting "3,400 education positions this year, triple the number from last year," the story works well as a follow-up months after funding for Wisconsin's schools was cut.

The story is fairly comprehensive because it sources the survey itself, and the Legislative Fiscal Bureau and Senate Education Committee for numbers that are missing from the survey information.

Obit Analysis

| No Comments

By Alison Henderson

The obituary for Andy Rooney on the New York Times website has a standard New York Times style lead but placed the age in the second paragraph. The standard approach works, but an alternative lead could have fit based on the character of Andy Rooney.

The article relies largely on CBS News and quotes previously made by Rooney for sourcing. Other information is not sourced because the article focuses on facts and statements that were most likely made publicly during his career at CBS.

"He once concluded that 'it is possible to be dumb and be a college president,' but he acknowledged that 'most college students are not as smart as most college presidents," the obituary said.

This obituary differs from a resume because it focuses more on Rooney's character than his accomplishments.

Public Meeting Analysis

| No Comments

By Alison Henderson


A News Star article discusses an upcoming public meeting in Louisana where a public service commissioner will be visiting several parishes in the area.

The article is an advance and focus almost completely on the series of meetings. It does not address any related issues or background for these meetings, but it does include the purpose for the meetings, and the times that they will be held.

The author appears to have talked directly to the commissioner as he is quoted without attribution to any other news source.

Multimedia Analysis

| No Comments

By Alison Henderson
The Los Angeles Times features several stories in picture and video. They allow you to choose a story and scroll through the picture slideshow, often providing video documentation to compliment the photographs. The featured multimedia story is about the World Trade Center. It provides a slide show and a feature article about people linked to Rescue 5 that were impacted by the attacks.

The New York Times offers more variety in terms of interactive media. Not only do they provide audio slide shows and videos, they also include interactive maps and charts to compliment the story.

Most of the multimedia writings provide less text with very brief descriptions, letting the graphics, images or handy mouse roll-overs speak for themselves.

Difference in Stories

| No Comments

Though this isn't a hard news story, it is a follow up comparing the first day of the OccupyMN protest to the second day.

The message of each story is relatively the same, in that both articles summarize the event, discuss any problems that are occurring and take quotes from protesters at the event.

The differences in the leads affect the tone of each story. The first lead focuses on the reasoning behind the event and the larger issue at hand. It's presented like an overview or observation of the event.

The second lead immediately introduces one of the protesters and tells her story, making it more of a feature story than a hard news report.

The other difference I find is that the second article focuses on the decreased number of protesters compared to yesterday.

Structure Analysis

| No Comments

Here is a simple Star Tribune report about a collision between a bus and car found in the "West Metro" section of the website.

Because the incident had no deaths, the story is extremely short and the sentences are concise.

The lead and the refresher quickly provide the who, what, when and where details of the story. This approach is simple and effective, however the following paragraphs of the story seem out of order.

A quote from the district's website about injuries is followed by an unimportant detail from the report about bus delays. The next paragraph refers to injuries again and the final paragraph provides details about how the incident happened.

I think it would have been more effective to bunch similar information, such as details about the injuries, together rather than peppering them throughout the report. I'm sure for a story that is not very news worthy, less attention is paid to the order of information blocks.

Attribution Analysis

| No Comments

By Alison Henderson
This BBC report analyzes the social media impacts on the Troy Davis trial. The story does not have much attribution because most of the information is well known. The beginning of the report relies heavily on references to tweets. Because the story is related to social media, specifically Twitter, the citations are appropriate. In this situation, the links offer more interaction and keep the reader engaged. I think in a story that was not related to social media, referencing multiple tweets might make the report seem cluttered and illegitimate.
The latter half of the story cites statements made from social media experts (including several quotes from Brian Southwell). The majority of the attributions come after the quote. The formula is "quote-says-name" followed by a description of the person's relevance. This set up makes the story easy to read.

Lead Analysis

| 1 Comment

By Alison Henderson
In an article from the BBC about an earthquake in Nepal, India, the story is reported as hard-news. The lead is presented in a straight-forward manner addressing who, where, what and why with little excess information. The main news value addressed in this lead seems to be impact, because the reporter begins with the number of people that have been killed.
The most emphasis is focused on the people that were killed or injured and the magnitude of the earthquake. By providing this information and emphasis in the lead, the reporter is able to express the gravity of the situation without directly stating "this is serious". The facts are speaking for themselves in this case, which is what gives it the hard-news format.
I think it's interesting that the lead left out the "when" component of the story. Perhaps this is a continuing story that has been updated several times since it occurred.

About this Archive

This page is an archive of recent entries in the Analysis category.

International is the next category.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.