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October 22, 2007

Tigers being Killed

Tigers have been vanishing in India in the past few years, and may face extinction if the trend continutes. The source -- the Mogya tribe. The Mogya's are a poaching community that say they have been killing the tigers for food. It seems that tiger body parts, including the eyes, are a hot commodity these days.
In the past 100 years, the tiger population has gone down by about 95%, the Strib article stated.

Both of these articles depicted the scene very differently. The Strib began with an anecdotal lead, and gradually told the story of a Mogya that has killed a few tigers, and why he does it. Then it made its way into why the tiger killing is problematic.
The Wildlife Travels piece talked about the issue of tiger killing only briefly, but primarily focused on the Mogya tribe.

Wildlife Travels: http://www.thewildlifetravels.com/educate-child.html
Strib: http://www.startribune.com/722/story/1496400.html

Atlanta drought gets serious

A massive drought in Atlanta, Georgia has the major city looking at only 90 days left of water. The unprecedented water shortage has left many in panic.
These two articles took two very different approaches to describing the epic scene.
ABC news played it safe with a straight, invert-pyramid style piece. It was interesting, well written and portrayed the serious nature of the drought.
The Strib took a little more creative approach. It looked almost like an alternative news story, though without the usual bells and whistles. The article was broken up into different sections including: THE SITUATION, THE FIRST STEP, THE NEXT STEP, and so on.
I personally was more drawn to the Strib. I am always interested in reading articles that take a unique approach of any sort.

Strib: http://www.startribune.com/484/story/1497236.html
ABC: http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/story?id=3730145&page=1

Miley Cyrus takes over the Twin Cities

Miley Cyrus, along with her alter ego, Hannah Montana, took over the Twin Cities this weekend. Or so it seems based on these two articles.
Apparently the Disney Channel pop-star is the biggest thing to hit the world of young teen music since whatever was popular last year.
The majority of both of these articles focused on the ticket price aspect. The show sold out in seconds, and now that ticket scalping is legal in Minnesota, sites like ebay, cragislist, and stubhub were overflowing with seats -- some which going for over $1,000 a piece. If that doesn't seem crazy enough, it seems people were dying to shell the money out.
The angry mothers and fathers described as "knowing just how lucky they are to be here" almost seemed to steal the focus away from the actual event, especially in the Strib article.

Kare 11:http://www.kare11.com/news/news_article.aspx?storyid=267847
Strib: http://www.startribune.com/music/story/1498609.html

Stillwater Man Killed on Moped

While making a left turn in Stillwater, a moped rider was struck by a car and killed on the scene. The other driver, a White Bear Lake woman, along with her daughter who was in the passenger seat, were just fine.

Although this was only a breaking news brief, it interested me because I am from Stillwater. I thought that it was a good article. It gave me all the facts in the inverted pyramid format.

Strib: http://www.startribune.com/462/story/1499616.html
MSNBC: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21419258

October 15, 2007

Vatican official denies being gay

Monsignor Tommaso Stenico, a Vatican official in charge of all of the world's priests, was caught on video trying to seduce a young man. Stenico said he was only pretending to be gay to further his studies as a psychanalyst. Stenico is currently suspended.
Stenico told papers that he was set up.
This was a well-written article. It revealed the facts of the case while still giving Stenico a voice in the article, balancing it out.

AP: http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5ip83hAyNTDWjfBtmVpqkXBI974WQD8S94PU00

ID determined of man's found dead in Fridley creek

This was a breaking news story about a man whose body was found in a creek in Fridley. Authorities must have just identified it because it was not on any other website.
The article talked about a body that was found by hikers this weekend. They were able to identifiy the body. The article also outlined other relevant information, like how long authorities believe he had been there. It followed the inverted pyramid strictly.


Suspected Rapist Apprehended

Police arrested a man they believe beat and raped a woman near the light-rail earlier this month.
The woman was waiting for a train after leaving some friends at a bar when a 20-year-old man put a gun to her head and brought her to a nearby laundry mat. The woman's description along with security cameras allowed police to find a person who they think is guilty of beating and raping the woman.
This was a great article. It followed the inverted pyramid closely. It also included information about rape and crime statistics, which I thought was interesting. However, it's possilbe that the reporter was just trying to find more sources to put in the story. Either way, it worked for me

Strib: http://www.startribune.com/462/story/1482645.html

AIM leader died

Vernon Bellecourt, a prominent figure in the American Indian Movement, died Saturday due to pneumonia at age 75. Bellecourt was mostly known for his battle against racist sports team names.
He had fallen ill a few weeks after a trip to Venezuala, and progressively got worse.
Both of these articles talked a lot about Bellecourt's life and accomplishments furthering human rights for American Indians. The MSNBC article seemed a little more personal to me, so I would say that I liked that article better than the Strib, except the MSNBC article literally has a mortgage advertisement in the middle of it. This is a great example of news outlet advertising taking away from the news. Tsk tsk!

MSNBC: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21287518/
Strib: http://www.startribune.com/466/story/1483509.html

October 8, 2007

Chinese Olympic Protester Tortured

Yang Chunlin, a man from northeaster China, was arrested recently after circulating a letter that protested the Olympics. Chunlin was gathering signature from farmers whose land has been confinscated for the upcoming Olympics. Chunlin has been tortured and beaten in prison, former fellow inmate said. He has not been able to see his lawyer.

The sources of this story really gave it a strong foundation. The reporter was somehow able to track down a former fellow inmate of Chunlin's, providing an eyewitness account of the brutality that he has been enduring. The story also had voices from Chunlin's sister and an internation activist group.

Strib: http://www.startribune.com/722/story/1470718.html

Moose goes down

A couple of St. Paul men killed a large moose up by the boundary waters. The moose's antlers could be a record size for the state. It is mandatory to let the antlers dry out for 60 days before doing final measurements.

When I first opened this story, there was a picture of a moose behind a "No Trespassing" sign that I took as the photo for the story. As I scrolled down, I saw the picture again, and I noticed that it said "On the wrong side of the sign? Fall Auction" under it. As I got toward the bottom of the story, I discovered that the fall auction is an annual drawing to see who gets to be in the lucky 233 Minnesotans that are allowed to go moose hunting. The moose picture was actually an ad for the auction.
I know that this has nothing to do with the writer, and it is probably designed to appear whenever anyone looks at anything moose related, but it still raises some ethical questions.
Running next to this story, it seems like the strib is not only condoning, but promoting moose hunting. I'm sure that a lot of people read this story and were not pleased with the fact that such a large wild animal was killed for sport. Those people would probably not be please with an ad for moose hunting running twice on the same page as the article!

As far as souces go for this article, they were kind of weak, in my opinion. They got a few solid testimonies from the hunters, which was vital. But attributing the estimated weight of the moose to an unspecified bioligist, and not naming the taxedermist makes the story flimsy, in my opinion.

Strib: http://www.startribune.com/531/story/1471213.html
wcco: http://wcco.com/local/local_story_279132233.html

Eating Again!

As the yearly Ramadan dawn til dusk fast comes to an end, restaraunts around the area fill up with hungry people. The Big Marina Grill and Deli in Columbia Heights was prepared on Friday. Last year, the restaraunt had a 2+ hour waiting period. This year they erected an enormous tent to accomodate more people.
Ramadan is a religous Muslim tradition. The twin cities have a vast Muslim community. The post-fast feast is a huge deal for a lot of restaraunts around the area.
The sources in this story include restaraunt owners and patrons. The combination of the two gave the story an overall well rounded voice.

Strib: http://www.startribune.com/456/story/1469945
HNT: http://www.thnt.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071005/NEWS010401/710050426/1001

6 young people killed in Wisconsin

Six young people were killed in Crandon, Wisconsin Sunday afternoon by a local off duty deputy named Tyler Peterson. Peterson, 20, shot several people at a pizza party. The motive for the crime is still unknow, but it is believed that it was a crime of passion. The victims were all teenagers and young adults.
The town of Crandon is living a nightmare. Testimonies from locals were very emotional.
There was a wide variety of sources for this article. A lot of the sources were police officers and investigators. This gave the story a legitimate voice. But the article also had quite a bit of informal sources, just people around the town. This made the story more personal.

Strib: http://www.startribune.com/484/story/1469746.html
CBS: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/10/07/national/main3340055.shtml?source=mostpop_story

October 1, 2007


A child from Africa was named "Godknows" by his parents. The name stemmed from his parents being unsure of whether or not he would live more than a few years.
According to Godknows, names like that are not that uncommon where he is from. There are even a few other Godknows's in his homeotwn.
The writer of this article seemed to have a hatred for the way that Americans name their babies. He described at reasonable length how people don't put much time into their naming.


Murderer fugitives arrested

2 murderers on the run after escaping from a Utah prison were recently caught. The killers had tied up a 72-year-old former police officer and stolen his SUV. The ex-cop freed himself and called authorities. After a long chase and a few shots fired (from police), the criminals were taken into custody.
This was a straight forward inverted pyramid story. It flowed well.


Delivery driver shot in North Minneapolis

A 15 and 17 year old boy are in police custody after allegedly shooting a a delivery driver in North Minneapolis. The driver delivered a package and walked back to his truck to find the two boys standing there pointing a gun at him. Thr driver, Dwayne Greer, attempted to drive away and received one of three shots fired near his hip. Greer, a father, is now dealing with the reality of the aftermath- they might not be able to get the bullet out due to the high risk area that it was lodged.
Politicians boast about the descending crime rate Minneapolis, specifically the North side. However, the North side also was the setting for the 12-year-old girl who was shot a week ago.
This was a good article. It seemed to be written in a visual sort of way. I could picture the event unfolding.


Campus Tailgaters

Tailgaters downtown near the dome have been stirring up some mixed emotions from the local residents, according to the Star Tribune article. Gopher and Vikings tailgating sessions both took place within a span of 17 hours this weekend. Some local residents were upset by the behavior, particulalry from the Gopher tailgaters. Others didn't seem to mind.
The Daily article discussed Gopher tailgaters only. A lot of parking lots around the area are banning tailgating due to rowdy behavior.

The Star Tribune article was interestingly written. There were a few parts that seemed odd to me. For example, it reads that a Gopher's tailgater "alleges he is twenty-one", which obviously implies that the writer does not believe that this is so.
It was an interesting story to read though, and I am curious as to how he was able to find actual residents to talk to. It seems like that would be tough.