A news article previously cited in this blog, regarding the outbreak of a neurological disease at a Minn. meatpacking plant, uses attribution effectively in some situations, but not in others.
The article uses quotes from and attributes facts to several individuals throughout the article. The author uses quotes from employees of the meatpacking plant, epidemiologists, and quite a few medical doctors and neurologists.
Many of the quotes are very effective at getting across main ideas about the event that took place in the article. For instance, on page 2, "'It’s something no one would have anticipated or thought about,'" from Dr. Osterholm is a well-used quote because it gets across an opinion about the nature of the event, helps generate interest in the story, and allows for some voice that the author of the article would not be able to provide on their own.
However there seemed to be too many medical doctors, epidemiologists, neurologists and experts in the article to keep track of them all. There were five professionals quoted in the article and i found myself getting confused toward the end of the article. Specifically, somewhere toward the beginning of the article, Dr. Ruth Lynfield was introduced and referenced throughout the entire story. Then, toward the middle of the article Dr. Ian Lipkin was introduced. At the end of the article, Dr. Lynfield was referenced once again. With these two names both beginning with "Dr. L..." it required going back to previous pages to try to get the two doctors straightened out in order to know who the final reference was about.
Perhaps it was just a matter of circumstance. The article probably did require many opinions from different professional fields. Perhaps it was the simple fact that the two most heavily cited doctors had somewhat similar names. In any event, the attribution in this article seemed rather daunting. It required several glances at previously read material and became confusing.