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January 25, 2007

Helicopter crash in Ecudaor

A helicopter crash in Ecuador killed the countries first female defense minister as well as her daughter and five others. The president has ordered a large investigation into the crash. The crash came just ten days into the presidents inauguration.

The reporter in the article from the Baltimore Sun did a good job writing about a tragic situation. The lead in the article is short and concise and to the point. He does not introduce names in the lead but does so in the upcoming paragraphs. One thing that I did think was odd about the article that he does not introduce the name of the defense minister until the fourth paragraph. This seems like something that is pertinent enough to be said earlier in the article then that. http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/nationworld/bal-ecuador0125,0,3206782.story?coll=bal-nationworld-headlines

I compared this article with one written from the Union Tribune in San Diego. The two articles share very similar leads that are brief and do not contain very many details. However in the article out of San Diego, the writer starts out with a quote directly after the lead. I would have liked to have known more about the situation before a quote was introduced. This article as well does not introduce the name of any of the victims until the fourth paragraph.
http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/world/20070125-1449-ecuador-ministerdies.html

Overall I felt that both of the two sources did a good job of getting the information across to the reader. Both contained leads that were concise and did not contain too much information to overwhelm the reader but did do enough to entice the reader to continue with the article.

Congrat....Whoops, nevermind

The University of Chapel Hill North Carolina accidentally sent out email notices to 2,700 high school seniors saying they were accepted at the University. The students who received the email will not find out officially until March whether they have been accepted or not. Two University officials were the ones responsible for the mishap.

The article that I read out of the Star Tribune was a very straightforward article. It was to the point and got all the necessary information across. It began with a very typical but well written 24 word lead. Looking at it there was no changes that I could have seen that would have made it better. The writer could have possible written something more clever about a rather humorous situation. However technically the lead looked good to the best of my knowledge. http://www.startribune.com/484/story/959431.html

I compared the Star Tribune's article about the mishap with the an article from Greensboro, North Carolina. The lead they chose to use was a bit different then the Tribune's. The writer informs the reader that 2,700 emails were sent out congratulating the applicants on admission to the school. Then they begin the next paragraph explaining that the problem was that none of these students were accepted. Both columns go into explaining how embarrassed the University was about the situation. They both quote the director of undergraduate admission in regards to the situation. http://www.news-record.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070125/NEWSREC0101/70125028

Both columns are great at getting their point across and well written, I preferred the one from North Carolina. They used more quotations from the director of undergraduate admissions. This gave me more information from a credible source in about the same amount of space.

U's basketball woes continue

The U of M men's basketball team continued to struggle on Wednesday night falling to Michigan State 70-46. The team struggled on both ends of the floor and continue its sluggish play without center Spencer Tollackson who has been sidelined with a wrist injury.

I thought the column written by Jeff Shelman of the Star Tribune had a well written lead. It was short, concise and did not contain many of the cliches that are common in sports writing. The columnist also did a good job prodding into the many problems that have plagued the Gopher basketball team this year, instead of just focusing on the obvious set of problems.

The same game was written by The Pioneer Press and I was much more impressed by the coverage of the Star Tribune. The lead in the Press story is references to what was going on with the team a year ago. This years team is radically different then last years team since the graduation of players as well as the dismissal of head coach. Comparing the two seems very apples and oranges in my opinion. Furthermore the lead was rather confusing and worded awkwardly. Both papers are similar in the fact that they the team is struggling and now answers seem in sight. http://www.twincities.com/mld/twincities/sports/16538993.htm

In my opinion I prefered the article written about the game in the Star Tribune. The lead was better, it was easier to follow and the article did a better digging deeper into the problems the team has faced in their current five game losing streak.