Death of the Rocky

The Rocky Mountain News published its last edition Friday, two months short of its 150th anniversary.  The newspaper business is dying for many reasons, but one of them is that they really seem to enjoy sticking their fingers in the eyes of  large numbers of potential and former readers.

The Denver Post  is considered left-of-center, the Rocky, right-of-center.   That’s based on the guys who write the official editorials —definitely not on how the news itself is written and edited. But a newspaper is a newspaper, not an  “editorialpaper.” We read newspapers primarily to get the news, not E.J. Dionne’s opinion.

One could pick up the Post and read some AP story about former Vice President Cheney attending some function, and it reads :

“….former Vice President Cheney, who some say abused his office, spoke today…..”

Or one could pick up the Rocky and read:

“….former Vice President Cheney, who some say abused his office, spoke today…..”

See the difference?

Or how about my recent  favorite AP example: ” …Failed Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin… “

The former appeared in hundreds of US newspapers last month.  The phrase “…Failed educational reformer Barack Obama…” has never appeared in any newspaper despite his ghastly performance at CAC in Illinois.  Insulting conservative readers with screwy left-wing pablum dropped into the middle of news stories has largely ruined the joys of the newspaper-reading experience for many.

And it isn’t just the wording, it’s the choosing and placement of articles.  Jim Geraghty suggests reading newspapers from back to front, in order to get to the more significant news first.

Why did Sarah Palin’s wardrobe require 40 times more coverage than Obama’s only CEO experience—a multimillion dollar disaster?

I’m just stumped again.

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