April 26, 2009

Analysis: Week of 4/20 (Computer-assisted reporting)

The statistics relating to chemicals found in waterways were found using the U.S. Geological Survey Database. Areas with runoff were found with the Department of Agriculture database. The reporters needed to have the ability to connect to the internet and would need to know how to search. The reporter would need to know what terms to use and what key words are needed for getting correct results when searching.

Man falls off Highway 77 bridge after only pretending to do so

A man who pretended to fall of the Highway 77 bridge in Bloomington, Minn., fell off the bridge last Sunday, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. He was in stable condition.

A 21-year-old man called police before 5 a.m. Sunday, April 19, and said his friend had fallen off the bridge into a marshy area 30 feet below.

The 21-year-old driver was going north when his friend told him to pull into the emergency lane of the bridge so that he could urinate.

The 23-year-old then pretended to fall after climing the ledge of the bridge. He, infact, did fall after pretending to do so, a press release from the Bloomington Police Department said.

Bloomington and Eagan police responded, using a chair lift to rescue the man. He was then taken to Hennepin County Medical Center and treated. He received serious injuries, WCCO-TV said.

April 19, 2009

Woman gets urinated on during airline flight

A three week jail sentence has been given to a 28-year-old man after he urinated on a 66-year-old woman during a Continential Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Honolulu last month, AOL News reported.

Jerome Kenneth Kingzio plead guilty to assault charges and was sentenced Tuesday in a Honolulu federal court.

The victim was watching an in-flight movie during the flight to Hawaii on March 21 when Kingzio stood up and began urinating on her.

The victim pushed Kingzio back but he continued to urinate, CBS News reported. Kingzio was seated a row behind the woman's aisle seat and had been drinking and bothering other passengers throughout the flight.

The woman said the incident ruined her vacation and still causes her to suffer emotionally, U.S. Attorney Edward Kubo Jr said.

Kingzio will be placed under six months of supervised release following his release from prison. He will also undergo substance abuse treatment.

April 12, 2009

Analysis: Week of 4/6 (Diversity)

Mpls. gay couple, sons included in Easter celebration at White House

The article avoids stereotypes by talking about how this is the first time that gay families have been invited to the Easter Egg Roll at the White House. I did not previously know how the White House invited families to the Easter Egg Roll. I also did not know that this was the first time that the White House seeked out homosexual families to come to the Egg Roll.

The article uses both quotes and data to tell information that I previously did not know. For instance, data on exactly how many LGBT families will participate. Quotes are also used to reveal more personal details for more of a storytelling aspect. The article quotes the gay couple talking about how long the couple has been together and what the kids want to see at the White House.

Lemaire done as Wild head coach

Wild head coach Jacque Lemaire will no longer coach the Wild after this year, WCCO-TV has reported.

"There comes a time when you know it's the right time to go. And I know this," Lemaire said.

Lemaire has a career record of 538-415-176 after coaching stops in Montreal, New Jersey and Minnesota. He led the New Jersey Devils to the 1995 Stanley Cup title.

Lemaire became the coach of the Wild during their inaugural season of 2000-2001. Lemaire had a record of 291-256-107 with the Wild, including a winning record in his last six seasons.

Despite being plagued with injuries, the Wild came close to making the playoffs with a 40-33-9 record for 89 points.

"We tried a lot of players through the season. Some of them had great years, others not so good. In general, I think it was good for the whole team. The guys will learn from this," Lemaire said.

"I had eight great years," he said.

April 5, 2009

Analysis: Week of 3/30 (Numbers)

The reporter for the Winona Daily News uses numbers to show how much Winona helps out other Minnesota cities financially and then uses that number to compare with how much the city actually has to spend. The reporter uses per capita to show how much money is involved for the size of the area. He also uses percentages to show how much is being cut from certain programs.

While the numbers are numerous, they are not hard to understand. The reporter used percentages to help give a better idea of what the numbers mean. The numbers come from people like state auditors and spokespeople. Sometimes numbers are just listed, leaving out the sources.

Winona honor students charged with theft

Three Winona Senior High School honor students were charged with stealing more than $1,300 worth of cash and merchandise from gym lockers, the Star Tribune reported.

The students were charged with felony counts of theft and receiving stolen property. Of the three students, one of the boys was 17 and the other two were 16.

The students stole cash, cell phones, an iPod and a credit card by breaking padlocks on lockers last December, prosecutors said.

One of the boys indicated the other two involved in the theft after a few of the stolen items were found in his backpack, authorities said.

Police searched one of the teens but found nothing until he dropped wads of cash as he walked out of the room.

The students are due in court on April 20.

March 29, 2009

Week of 3/23 - Obituaries

I chose to look at the obituary of Steven Bach, who died at 70 from cancer and was known as a producer, biographer and memoirist. The sources used in the obituary of Steven Bach include his agent, Robert Lescher, Roger Ebert, an un-named United Artists executive and David Thompson.

It has the standard obituary lead, in that it lists his name in the first paragraph, folled by what he was known for, and then listing where and at what age he died. The second paragraph lists his accomplishments, and the following paragraphs list quotes and a short biography of his life. The lead works, in that it is the standard obituary lead which is very formulaic. The obit features quotes, even negative ones, like the quote from Roger Ebert.

Timberwolves beat Nets, end losing streak

Led by Mike Miller's 22 points, 10 rebounds and five assists, the Minnesota Timberwolves defeated the New Jersey Nets Sunday, 108-99, the Star Tribune has reported. The loss places New Jersey at the 11th spot in the Eastern Conference, 5 1/2 games out of the 8th and final playoff spot.

Other high scorers in the game were Ryan Gomes, who scored 21, and Kevin Love, who scored 16 points along with 11 boards. Rodney Carney scored 19 points coming off the bench. The two top scorers on the Nets were Vince Carter, who scored 36, and Devin Harris, who had 19.

Minnesota was without their top two players. Al Jefferson has been out since February and Randy Foy was out of the game due to a hip injury. The absence of these players required another player step up and score points in order for the Wolves to pull off the win.

"I think sometimes when your offense is clicking, your defense will be a little bit better and tonight we shared the ball and moved the ball and everyone was excited," Wolves guard Ryan Gomes said.

March 15, 2009

Gophers, North Dakota State make NCAA Tournament

The Minnesota Golden Gophers will play the Texas Longhorns on Thursday in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, WCCO-TV reported. It was announced on Sunday that the 10th-seeded Gophers will be facing off against the seventh-seeded Longhorns Thursday in Greensboro, N.C.

This is the first time the Gophers have made the NCAA Tournament since 2005, when Dan Monson coached the team. That year, the Gophers fell to the Iowa State Cyclones in the first round.

The winner of the game will likely play ACC Tournament Champion Duke the following Saturday. The No. 2 Duke Blue Devils play Binghamton in the first round.

The Gophers defeated the tournament's number one seed, Louisville, in December during non-conference play. However Minnesota had a difficult February, losing six of their last nine games. They defeated Northwestern in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament.

The North Dakota State Bison also qualified for the NCAA tournament as the number 14 seed in their first year of Division I eligibility, the Star Tribune reported. The Bison will face the third-seeded Kansas Jayhawks Friday at the Metrodome, likely giving North Dakota State a homecourt advantage.

March 8, 2009

Liriano, Twins flirt with no-hitter

Minnesota Twins pitcher Francisco Liriano's four perfect innings of pitching helped the Twins defeat the Baltimore Orioles Sunday, 2-0, the Star Tribune reported. This is the second time in four games that the Twins came close close to a no-hitter.

It took a single by Oriole's top catching prospect, Matt Wieters, to break up the no-hitter in the ninth inning. The Twins scored thanks to a Carlos Gomez two-run homerun in the sixth off of righty Hayden Penn.

The Twins had a perfect game going up until the seventh, when Orioles first baseman Oscar Salazar got on base because of an error, the Baltimore Sun reported.

Liriano struck out five Oriole batters. Seven of the nine batters Liriano faced Sunday are expected to start on Opening Day for the O's.

"All my pitches were working for me today," Liriano said. "So it can't be any better than that."

Analysis: Week of 3/2 (Event Coverage)

Television: HBO show bids Ferrell's Bush farewell

This article talks about "You're Welcome, America. A Final Night With George W. Bush," a broadway show which is based on Will Farrell's impersonation of George Bush from Saturday Night Live. The show features Will Farrell impersonating the former president and was directed by Adam McCay. The article is advancing HBO's 90-minute television broadcast of one of the final shows.

The sources used for the advance are Will Ferrell and Adam McCay. For the angle, the article makes this a kind of send off for Bush, with comments from McCay and Ferrell about why it was important to them to do this and what it was like for Ferrell to follow Bush in the news and to satirize him on TV. The reporter, Neal Justin, avoids a listing by giving the show a backstory by talking about how the George Bush character came to be.

March 1, 2009

Analysis: Week of 2/23 (Meeting/press conference)

A news report in the Pioneer Press discusses the addition of a bike lane and sidewalk to Marshall Avenue, located on the Minneapolis-St. Paul border. The St. Paul City Council discussed the moving of some trees and a fence for the addition of a sidewalk. A councilmen mentioned how many people around the area would use a sidewalk with a bikelane. They also discussed how the property owner does not like the idea of a sidewalk since it requires maintenance.

The agenda can be seen here.

The Pioneer Press article basically summed up the information into a brief, ommitting less important information from the meeting. The article discussed how the sidewalk would be paid for and just mentioned that it was opposed by the Town & Country club.

Search called off for 2 missing NFL players has reported that according to a knowledgable source, the 2 day search for a 21-foot fishing boat carrying two NFL players has been called off.

ProFootballTalk was reportedly told the boat left Seminole and followed the Intercoastal Waterway. A search was conducted to look for debris between Sand Key and Anlclote in Pasco County.

The U.S. Coast Guard was searching for four people, two of which are missing NFL players. The two missing NFL players are Defensive end Corey Smith of the Detroit Lions, and Marquis Cooper of the Oakland Raiders, Reuters said.

Ron Del Duca, Smith's agent, said the two men had apparently ran into a storm front.

The boat was reported missing after leaving Clearwater Pass and not returning on time. The Coast Guard said it searched west about 50 miles from Clearwater Pass.

February 22, 2009

Analysis: Week of 2/16 (Spot and Follows)

I chose to compare the first and second articles written about the Minnesota, Northwestern basketball game.

The lead in the first story is shorter and more to the point than the lead in the second story. The first article mentions the top scorer and the score of the game. The second article builds up to the lead with a few sentences describing the Gopher's struggles of the past few weeks.

The second article summarizes the news in more of a narrative format, giving more of a backstory. The first summarized the back story and gave more statistics. The second article also has lenghty quotes, where as the first did not have quote at all. The second story advances the news by adding more post-game comments and reaction from players and coaches.

I am not sure if it is the result of a competing news organization, but around the time of the initial article in the Star Tribune, WCCO had a lengthier version which did have quotes.

Gophers pummel Northwestern, 72-45

Led by Lawrence Westbrook's four three-pointers and 17 points, Minnesota easily defeated Northwestern Sunday night by a score of 72-45, the Star Tribune reported.

According to WCCO, Westbrook has only been averaging six points per game since the beginning of February.

"I have confidence in myself," Westbrook said. "I stopped thinking so much."

Kevin Coble and Craig Moore, who combined for 42 points in Northwestern's previous win over Minnesota, were each held to single digits. Northwestern as a team had difficulty making shots from the beginning, and were held to a season-low 14 field goals.

The Gophers pulled away from Northwestern in the first half, closing the first half on a 20-5 run. Minnesota led 26-18 at halftime.

Jeremy Nash and John Shurna each scored nine points, while Gopher reserve Devron Bostick also scored nine.

Minnesota has stopped their two game skid and is now 20-7, 8-7 in the Big Ten Conference.

February 16, 2009

Analysis: Week of 2/9 (Structures)

The article "Cats removed from St. Anthony mobile home euthanized" from the Star Tribune is structured in a way that presents the most important information towards the top of the article. Information becomes less important as you read on.

The information in the first paragraph is the most important, stating that 120 cats have been euthanized. The second paragraph describes what the cats had. The third talks about supplementary details in regards to how many cats were removed. The fourth and final paragraph describes the couples' previous attempts at keeping too many cats in their previous home, the least important bit of info in the whole story.

While the article is still lacking information, like the names of the cat owners, it effectively presents information from the most to least importance so that the reader reads the important portion of the story first.

February 15, 2009

Gophers Win Thanks to Buzzer-Beater

Gopher Guard Brittany McCoy hit a buzzer-beating three point shot with 1.9 seconds remaining to help the Gophers defeat the Michigan Wolverines on Sunday, by a score of 60-59 at Crisler Arena, the Star Tribune reported.

McCoy became the go-to shooter after leading-scorer Emily Fox fouled out of the game. McCoy had only attempted 34 three-pointers before she sank Sunday's game winner.

McCoy didn't think that the ball was heading to the rim, and it wouldn't have gone in if it weren't for it hitting the backboard in just the right spot.

"I think she [Michigan's Krista Phillips] might have even tipped the ball," McCoy said.

"I don't think Brittany knew that we didn't need a three-pointer," Coach Pam Borton said.

Sunday's victory puts the Gopher Women at 4th place in the Big Ten, behind Purdue and Ohio State.

The Gophers next opponents are the Ohio State Buckeyes, who currently lay claim to second place in the Big Ten.

February 8, 2009

Analysis: Week of 2/2

The sources named in this article include the National Weather Service, Sheriff Bob Bratton, a spokesman for the U.S. Coast Guard, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Fishermen Gary and David Vaughn, the Toledo Blade, and Chief Petty Officer Robert Lanier. The sources are scattered throughout the story. The information is from people, the National Weather Service, and newspapers around Lake Erie. When CNN was attributing a person, they would say that the person "said." When CNN attributed a newspaper, CNN would mention that the person "told" the newspaper. When CNN mentioned the National Weather Service attribution, they wrote that "the National Weather Service issued..." CNN's use of attribution is effective because it tells you who said what and what each person's credentials are. It is not too confusing, but you have to scroll back to where the person was first mentioned to see their credentials again.

Minnesota Timberwolves' Al Jefferson injured in loss

Minnesota Timberwolves Center-Forward Al Jefferson had to leave Sunday nights game against the New Orleans Hornets with an injury to his right knee, the Pioneer Press reported.
With 27 seconds remaining in the game, Jefferson fell to the floor as he was fighting for the ball with Hornets center Sean Marks. Jefferson ended up landing his right leg on the inside of Marks' right foot, causing an apparent twist on Jefferson's knee. Jefferson attempted to get up after the fall, but fell back to the court and grabbed his knee.
"I just came down wrong on it. I felt it pop," Jefferson said.
An MRI will be used to see what happened to the knee.
"You never feel good when you see anyone go down," Wolves coach Kevin McHale said.

February 1, 2009

2/1 Analysis: Leads

The Lead: "Gari L. Stewart, 28, is charged in a one-day crime spree allegedly involving arson, rape, kidnapping and burglary."

The news elements in this lead include the who: Gari L. Stewart, and the what: a one-day crime spree allegedly involving arson, rape, kidnapping, and burglary. The "where, when, why" questions do not really seem to be answered, but I suppose they don't necessarily have to be. The general information that is included is the person's name, her age, and what she did that is news worthy. What is detailed is what she did on her crime spree.

Gold medalist Phelps regrets pipe photo

Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps, 23, has admitted that the photos of him using a pipe bong to smoke marijuana are authentic, and that he vows to not do it again, CNN reports.
"...I acted in a youthful and inappropriate way, not in a manner that people have come to expect from me," Phelps said. "For this, I am sorry. I promise my fans and the public -- it will not happen again."
Phelps also released a statement of apology on his Facebook account, which was greeted with comments of both acceptance and dissent.
The U.S. Olympic Committee released a separate statement that said it was "disappointed in the behavior recently exhibited by Michael Phelps."
"Michael is a role model, and he is well aware of the responsibilities and accountability that come with setting a positive example for others, particularly young people," the committee said. "In this instance, regrettably, he failed to fulfill those responsibilities."
The Committee added that, "Michael has acknowledged that he made a mistake and apologized for his actions. We are confident that, going forward, Michael will consistently set the type of example we all expect from a great Olympic champion."
BBC News reported that Phelps may no longer be able to take part in a pilot test program formed to increase the accuracy of doping tests.
"For one of the Olympics' biggest heroes it's disappointing, and we'll evaluate whether he remains in that programme," Travis Tygart said.