You can’t even spell the name of your parent company? Seriously?

You all know I’ve been critical of my friends at Advance Publications and their decision to print several of their formerly daily newspapers only three days a week.

And Advance made the choice to downsize its work force. So I have a little less tolerance of dumbass mistakes like dummy headlines and whatnot in Advance papers these days.

I’m also critical of a decision by my friends at the Advance newspaper in Harrisburg, Pa., to place a story onto their Sunday front page about Advance combining its print and digital operations there into a new office space. Find the story at the bottom left.

130618HarrisburgFront

I don’t see how an “innovative” new office space affects readers enough to merit the front page. If you must run it, put it inside or on the biz page, where it belongs. (If you’re curious, find an online version of the story here and a photo gallery here.)

Still, if you’re going to run a story like this and if you’re going to slap it onto page one, it’s imperative that you correctly spell the name of your fucking company.

130618HarrisburgDetail2

Here’s the funny thing: This isn’t the first time we’ve seen an “Advanced” paper do something like this. Last summer. Advance combined editing and production of its three Alabama papers in Birmingham. In December, the Advance paper in Mobile suddenly forgot how to spell “Mobile.”

121210BirminghamError

Frowny-face, Advance. No one wants to see you all succeed more than I do. But you’re going to have to do better than this.

Thanks much to my anonymous tipster.

You know who else needs a copy editor?

Local TV news operations. Chicago’s WMAQ-TV in particular. And WLS-TV, also of Chicago. And Harrisburg’s Fox43 TV news. And WDAY-TV 6 News in Fargo, N.D. And Local 15 News in Mobile, Ala. And WMAR-TV in Baltimore. And WBAL-TV in Baltimore. And Fox 4 KDFW in Dallas. And (And again). And DFW Channel 11 in Dallas/Fort Worth. And San Antonio’s WOAI-TV. And KTLA channel 5 in Los Angeles. And KNBC channel 4 in Los Angeles. And KCBS channel 2 in Los Angeles. And KSDK in St. Louis. And Fox 4 News in Kansas City. And Charlotte’s WBTV. And KXAN-TV of Austin. And WFSB channel 3 in Hartford, Conn. And KOKI-TV, Fox23 in Tulsa. And Fox23 of Tulsa again. And Huntsville’s WAFF-TV. And WSPA-TV 7 in Spartanburg, S.C. And Miami’s WSVN channel 7. And KUSA 9 News in Denver, Colo. And 7News, also in Denver. And KSL channel 5 in Salt Lake City. And KCRG of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. And WXYZ-TV in Detroit. And KGMI News Talk radio in Bellingham, Wash. And local Fox affiliates. And other local TV news operations. And CBS local media. And CBS/DC in Washington. And the web operation for DC101 radio. And the Huffington Post. And the Huffington Post again. And CNN (and CNN again)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and a huge one here)(and yet again)(and yet again) and CNN Money and CNN mobile and Fox News (and Fox News again)(and Fox News yet again)(and again!)(and again!)(and yet again!)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and again, for cryin’ out loud)(and yet again)(and again)(and yet again)(and again) and Fox Business and MSNBC (and MSNBC again) (and MSNBC again) (and MSNBC yet again)(and MSNBC yet again) and ABC News and NBC news and NBC News again and NBC News yet again and the Weather Channel (and the Weather Channel again)(and the Weather Channel again)(and the Weather Channel yet again) and the BBC and the BBC again and German news channel N24. And the Canadian Broadcast Corp. (and the CBC again). And Fairfax media of New Zealand. And Dagsrevyen, the evening news broadcast of the Norwegian Broadcasting Corp. And al Jazeera. And Martha Stewart’s TV operation. And the Disney Channel. And AOL. And AOL’s Patch. And Patch again. And Advance’s MLive media group. And creators of mobile apps. And Yahoo News. And Yahoo News again. And Yahoo News again. And the fictional TMI! web site on the Newsroom TV show. And Google News’ bots. And baseball jersey manufacturers. And football jersey manufacturers. And college athletic department ticket offices. And sports ticket counterfeiters. And the NCAA. And the NCAA again. And the NCAA yet again. And the Big 12 Conference. And Georgetown University. And Kansas State University. And the University of Iowa. And the University of North Carolina. And the University of Texas. And Nebraska Wesleyan University. And Appalachian State University. And high school diploma printers. And the New York Jets, the Minnesota Vikings, the Minnesota Twins the St. Louis Cardinals, the Seattle Mariners, the New York Yankees and the Washington Nationals (boy, do they need a copy editor). And the Brooklyn Nets. And Manchester United. And the National Hockey League (and the NHL again). And the NHL Network. And NBA Premium TV. And ESPN (and ESPN again)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and three more times!)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and again)(and again) and Fox Sports (and Fox Sports again)(and Fox Sports one more time)(and Fox Sports yet again)(and yet again)(and yet again). And NBC Sports. And NBC Sports again. And CBS Sportsline. And TBS Sports. And CNN.SI. And Sports Illustrated (and again) (and again). And College Baseball 360. And the Field of Dreams folks in Dyersville, Iowa. And Leaf trading card company. And the Virginia general assembly. And college alumni magazines. And pharmacies. And the makers of Sudafed. And Borders bookstore. And the U.S. Postal Service. And government agencies and political candidates. And preachers-turned-political candidates. And Tea Party candidates. And the Newt Gingrich campaign. And the Mitt Romney campaign. And the Mitt Romney campaign again. And the White House. And the Vice President. And the President himself. And the U.S. Senate. And city and county Boards of Elections. And Congressmen from South Carolina. And the state of Oregon. Both the state of Pennsylvania and its department of transportation. And the city of Norfolk, Va. And the Ohio Dept. of Transportation. And the Alabama Dept. of Transportation. And the Maryland Dept. of Transportation. And the West Palm Beach, Fla., police dept. And Amtrak. And Lakewood High School in St. Petersburg, Fla. And Sunrise-McMillan Elementary School in Fort Worth, Texas. And Canadian school districts. And planners for Charlotte, N.C.’s Festival in the Park. And road paving contractors in Durham, N.C. and in New York City. And South African traffic cops. And the Conservation Trust of Puerto Rico.And the Moose lodge in Carroll, Iowa. And gas stations. And Manheim Car King of Harrisburg, Pa. And billboard companies. And bumper sticker manufacturers. And sign painters. And Pittsburgh skywriters. And airplane sign advertisers. And Home Depot and manufacturers of “hoodies.“ And T-shirt designers. And more T-shirt designers. And Old Navy. And Old Navy again. And Kohl’s. And Target. And Lids. And Adidas. And Mazda. And rubber stamp designers. And glass etchers. And stone carvers. And hotels. And more hotels. And manufacturers of custom-printed hotel accessories. And Starbucks. And Wendy’s. And Applebee‘s. And DaVanni’s Pizza. And restaurants, breakfast joints, Chinese restaurants and cake decorators. And more cake decorators. And drive-in movie theater managers. And auto dealers. And auto body shops. And Costa Cruises. And romance novelists. And Capcom, the makers of Resident Evil video games. And Namco Bandai, the maker of Naruto video games. And 2K Sports, the makers of NBA 2K13 video games. And Hasbro. And the Ku Klux Klan. And American Idol. And Paramount Pictures. And book cover designers. And editorial cartoonists. And business page editors. And South Africa’s New Age and Sunday Independent newspapers. And City Press of Johannesburg. And Dublin’s Sunday Business Post. And the Echo of Gloucestershire, England. And the London Daily Mail. And the National Post of Toronto, Canada. And the Winnipeg Sun. And the South China Morning Post. And the Herald Sun of Melbourne, Australia. And la Razon of Buenos Aires, Argentina. And the Air Force Times. And the Washington Post (Hey! Another repeat offender!), the Post’s Express tab (Hey! Yet another repeat offender!), the Washington Examiner, Boston’s Metro, the New York Times (Wow! Yet another repeat offender!)(Hey! A third offense!)(Hey! A fourth offense!)(Hey! A fifth error!)(Hey! They even have errors in their ads!),  A.M. New York, the Los Angeles Times (and the LAT again), the New York Post, the New York Post again, the New York Post yet again, the New York Post yet again, Wall Street Journal Europe, Newsday, USA Today, (and USA Today again), (and USA Today again)(and USA Today again), the Boston Globe, the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times (and yet another!), the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill., the Rochester, N.Y., Democrat & Chronicle, the Daily Mail of London, the Echo of Liverpool, England, the Seattle Times, the weekly Manila Mail of San Francisco, the Miami Herald (and again!), the Portland Oregonian, the Durham, N.C., Herald-Sun, (and again), the News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C. (and the News & Observer again!)(and again!)(and again!)(and yet again!), the Chapel Hill, N.C., News, the Times-News of Hendersonville, N.C., the Greensboro, N.C., News & Record, Advance Publications’ Birmingham design hub, the Tampa Bay Times, the Missoula, Mont., Missoulian, the Duluth, Minn., News Tribune, the Free Press of Mankato, Minn., the Springfield (Mass.) Republican, the Reformer of Brattleboro, Vt., the Bangor (Maine) Daily News, the Advocate of Stamford, Conn., the Hartford (Conn.) Courant, the Times-Record of Denton, Md., the News-Herald of Willoughby, Ohio, the Reporter of Lansdale, Pa., the Times-News of Erie, Pa., the Tribune-Review of Pittsburgh, Pa., the Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pa., the Wilmington, Del., News Journal, the Dispatch of Casa Grande, Ariz., the Amarillo (Texas) Globe News, the Laredo Morning Times, the El Paso Times, the Daily Telegram of Temple, Texas, the Independent of Rayne, La., the Huntsville (Ala.) Times, the Cincinnati Enquirer, the Cleveland Heights Sun Press, the Daily Times of Weirton, W.Va., the Waynesboro News Virginian, the Virginian-Pilot (and the Virginian-Pilot again) (and the Virginian-Pilot yet again), the Des Moines (Iowa) Register (and the Des Moines Register again), the Coon Rapids (Iowa) Enterprise, the Green Bay Press-Gazette, Gannett’s N.Y. Central Media hub, the Greenville (S.C.) News, the Gazette Journal of Reno, Nev., the Daily Herald of Provo, Utah, the Deseret News of Salt Lake City, the Salt Lake Tribune, the Fort Collins Coloradoan, the Denver Post, the Olympian of Olympia, Wash., the Anchorage (Alaska) Daily News, the Bakersfield Californian, the Pine Cone, of Carmel, Calif., the Carbondale, Ill., Southern Illinoisian, the Lakeland (Fla.) Ledger (Hey! Yet another repeat offender!) and the Canarsie Courier of New York City. And Politico. And the National Examiner. And the Associated Press. And the Associated Press again. And the Associated Press again. And the Associated Press again. And the Associated Press yet again. And the Associated Press yet again. And the Associated Press yet again. And yet again. And Mann’s Jeweler’s Accent magazine. And InTouch magazine. And New Scientist magazine. And Investment News magazine. And Time magazine (and Time magazine again). And Editor & Publisher.

And, of course, I need a copy editor myself.

I’ve always needed a copy editor. Which is why you’ll see me fight so hard for them.

 

A look at today’s notable Oklahoma tornado front pages

In the future, whenever you think of the horrifying tragedy Monday in Oklahoma, you’ll remember this image:

130521TornadoPhoto

That was shot in Moore, Okla., by Sue Ogrocki of the Associated Press.

Sue’s first-person story is downright chilling:

I expected chaos as I approached the piles of bricks and twisted metal where Plaza Towers Elementary once stood. Instead, it was calm and orderly as police and firefighters pulled children out one by one from beneath a large chunk of a collapsed wall.

Parents and neighborhood volunteers stood in a line and passed the rescued children from one set of arms to another, carrying them out of harm’s way. Adults carried the children through a field littered with shredded pieces of wood, cinder block and insulation to a triage center in a parking lot.

They worked quickly and quietly so rescuers could try to hear voices of children trapped beneath the rubble.

Read the rest of it here.

The way to play that photo — no matter where your paper was located today — was to run it big and get the hell out of its way. You’ll notice the similarities between how my former paper and my current paper built the top of page one today.

130521TornadoNorfolkVa 130521TornadoSantaAnaCalif

On the left is the Virginian-Pilot of Norfolk, Va., circulation 142,476. On the right is Scott Albert’s take in the Orange County Register of Santa Ana, Calif., circulation 280,812.

Several other papers also elected to give that same picture prominent play on page one today — and with a variation of that same headline. Click any of these — or any page here today — for a larger look.

130521TornadoLaDailyNews  130521TornadoChattanoogaTenn  130521TornadoHarrisburgPa  130521TornadoCincinnatiOhio

From left:

  • Los Angeles Daily News, circulation 94,016
  • Chattanooga (Tenn.) Times Free Press, circulation 75,336
  • Harrisburg, Pa., Patriot-News, circulation 70,446
  • Cincinnati (Ohio) Enquirer, circulation 144,165

And several papers paired their “devastation” headlines with this equally moving picture by Paul Hellstern of the Oklahoman of Oklahoma City, of teachers walking students away from the rubble of their school.

130521TornadoFargoND  130521TornadoAugustaGa

Do yourself a favor, folks, and don’t look too closely at that photo. Especially at the bruised and bleeding faces of those heroic teachers. Especially if you’re married to a teacher.

On the left is the Forum of Fargo, N.D., circulation 45,298. On the right is the Chronicle of Augusta, Ga., circulation 55,444.

Just to show you didn’t have to use “devastation” in your headline today, here are four more pages using that same Oklahoman picture, but with different — and wonderful — headline treatments.

130521TornadoNewarkNJ 130521TornadoOmahaNeb 130521TornadoDesMoinesIowa 130521TornadoChicagoIll

From left:

  • Newark, N.J., Star-Ledger, circulation 278,940
  • Omaha (Neb.) World-Herald, circulation 135,223
  • Des Moines (Iowa) Register, circulation 101,915
  • Chicago (Ill.) Tribune, circulation 414,590

Here are three that used the Sue Ogrocki photo, but with different headlines.

130521TornadoLosAngelesCalif  130521TornadoMinneapolisMinn  130521TornadoDetroitMich

From left:

  • Los Angeles (Calif.) Times, circulation 616,575
  • Minneapolis, Minn., Star Tribune, circulation 300,330
  • Detroit (Mich.) Free Press, circulation 232,696

In particular, I love how the Free Press headline puts an additional terrifying spin on an already alarming story. What I don’t like is how far down the page that story is shoved by the hockey skybox.

On the other hand, the hockey story a) is local, and b) will sell a lot of papers. Note how the picture is moved below the fold, but that dynamite headline will peek out of a news rack. Nicely played.

Even the New York City tabloids today created what I call “regional twins.”

130521TornadoNewYorkDailyNews 130521TornadoNewYorkPost

If I had to choose between the two, I’d argue the Daily News (left, circulation 595,636) shows the scope of the devastation behind the woman and child. The size and position of the headline on the Post (right, circulation 555,327) hides a important part of the photo.

Now, let’s turn our attention to the papers in Oklahoma…

TULSA WORLD

Tulsa, Okla.

Circulation: 97,725

The suburb of Oklahoma City that was struck Monday — Moore — was hit hard 14 years ago in a storm people there remember very clearly. Which explains the headline used today by the Tulsa World.

130521TornadoTulsaOkla

You already know I love the photo and the “play it big” treatment. The above-the-headline bullet points are a nice touch here.

PERRY DAILY JOURNAL

Perry, Okla.

Circulation: 3,050

I realize this is a tiny, tiny daily paper. But still, given the enormity of Monday’s events, this is perhaps the most unfortunate headline of the day.

130521TornadoPerryOkla

From what I can tell, the story — and presumably the headline — was written before Monday’s storms struck.

NORMAN TRANSCRIPT

Norman, Okla.

Circulation: 10,727

Nightmare” sums up Monday on the front of the Norman paper today.

130521TornadoNormanOkla

Instead of leading with school photos, the Transcript went with a photo of a woman being pulled from the rubble of a medical center in Moore. That seems an odd choice, given the number of victims at the school. The photo in the bottom left corner is a Sue Ogrocki picture from the school, but credited only to the “Associated Press.”

OKLAHOMAN

Oklahoma City, Okla.

Circulation: 130,177

The headline atop today’s Oklahoman made me stop and scratch my head.

130521TornadoOklahomaCity

I’m told this is a reference to the big storm that ripped through Oklahoma City in 1999. Locals get it.

However, one correspondent told me this morning:

In fact it was not worse than the tornado on May 3, 1999.

If that turns out to be the case, then someone might regret this headline.

MY WORK FROM MONDAY

I’ll close with some of my own work from Monday.

I was working away on my next Focus page for the Orange County Register, here in Southern California, when our news editor wondered if we could pull together some  information on what is a tornado and how dangerous they can be for today’s paper. They have a few waterspouts in these parts, but actual tornadoes are quite rare. So a backgrounder seemed in order.

It was around 3 p.m. I dumped what I was working on and jumped on it.

Luckily, I’ve done tornado graphics many, many times in the past. (And some of you will remember this blog post from March in which I explained why I’m so well-read on this topic.) So I knew where to go for statistical data. In addition, one of my colleagues here had done a nice “how a tornado is formed” graphic that beat hell out of the most recent one I had done. So I used his as a starting point.

Here is the resulting graphic, which ran on page three of today’s paper. Click, of course, for a larger view.

130521FocusPageTornado1.jpg

I didn’t want to interfere with whatever my friends on the A-section desk were doing with live coverage, so I stayed away from pictures of Monday’s tornado — which was of a less photogenic type, anyway, from what I can see in the videos. As the little caption says, there, in the bottom right: That is a tornado that was photographed Sunday near Wichita, Kansas.

Down the right side is a series of graphics that show how a tornado forms and — most importantly, for folks here in California — how they can spot them on radar and give people in their path early warning.

On the left is a look at stats: The ten deadliest, a month-by-month look at numbers over the past three-and-a-half years. See the two bars that stick way out to the right? Those are the months that produced the tornadoes in Tuscaloosa, Huntsville and Joplin.

In particular, I liked the bit that shows “tornado alley” and “Dixie alley,” where these storms are more frequent.

This was the first time I’ve built one of these pages on short notice, off the day’s news.

Today’s front page images are all from the Newseum. Of course.

A look at today’s Pope front pages

[Freshly updated with a few more credits that rolled in throughout the day Thursday…]

As you know, we have a new Pope. He’s from Argentina and is the first Pope ever from the Americas.

As you might imagine, papers in Argentina went crazy with the story today. But you can spot right away why I’m reluctant to spend a lot of time trying to analyze today’s front pages.

130314PopeClarin  130314PopeLaNacion  130314PopeElTerritorio

That’s right: The photo opportunities Wednesday were so limited that only a few shots emerged from Vatican City. Which gave today’s front pages an extremely homogeneous feeling.

Now, the good news is that those three papers…

  • Clarín of Buenos Aires, circulation 332,601
  • La Nacion of Buenos Aires, circulation 160,000
  • El Territorio of Posadas, circulation unknown

…each wanted the iconic shot of the day on page one. And they got it. Readers throughout Argentina will save today’s newspaper as a keepsake.

So even though, for news design purposes, I’m not thrilled with today’s front pages, readers probably are. And that’s what matters.

In addition — as you can see there — the Newseum expects today to be a high-traffic day with plenty of hot-linking and bandwidth stealing. So they slapped watermarks on everything today.

In the past, I’ve had a no-watermark rule here in the blog. But that’s just not practical, sadly enough. So we’ll grit our teeth and dive into a few notable front pages…

THAT SAME PICTURE…

…was used by many, many U.S. newspapers. Most were smart enough to use it well — even those that built enormous page-one packages.

Here are four of my favorites:

130314PopeBostonGlobe  130314PopeMilwaukee

130314PopeSanDiego  130314PopeNorfolkVa

The picture itself is by Gregorio Borgia of the Associated Press.

Top row:

  • Boston Globe, Boston Mass.; circulation 225,482
  • Journal Sentinel, Milwaukee, Wis.; circulation 185,710

Bottom row:

  • U-T San Diego, San Diego, Calif.; circulation 230,742
  • Virginian-Pilot, Norfolk, Va.; circulation 142,476

I realize I’m only showing my ignorance and unfamiliarity with Latin, but I wonder how many young people will look at that Virginian-Pilot headline and wonder: Why is there a line from Harry Potter on that page?

A VIEW FROM A COMPLETELY DIFFERENT ANGLE

Papers that didn’t use that yellow-backed AP picture likely used this one: A photo made by L’Osservatore Romano and also distributed by the Associated Press.

Interestingly, however, several papers that used this picture also chose to run secondary art where you could see the new Pope’s face.

130314PopeClevelandOhio

That’s the Cleveland, Ohio, Plain Dealer, circulation 246,571.

Here are two more examples of that same approach…

130314PopeHarrisburgPa 130314PopeNewarkNJ

…from the Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pa. (circulation 70,446) and the Star Ledger of Newark, Pa., (circulation 278,940).

It’s just a coincidence that all three of those papers are Advance publications. I think.

FINDING THAT DIFFERENT PICTURE

A few newspapers managed to find lead art that most papers did not run on page one today.

For example, the New York Times chose this picture by Alessandro Bianchi of Reuters.

130314PopeNewYorkTimes

The Washington Post went with an over-the-shoulder, wave-at-the-crowd shot, but not the same one we saw a moment ago. this is another handout from L’Osservatore Romano but distributed by Reuters.

130314PopeWashingtonPost

Average daily circulation for the Post is 507,615. The Times circulates 1,586,757 papers daily.

REGIONAL TWINS

Because of the scarcity of variety of art, I’d imagine, what I call “regional twins” popped up all over the place today. This is what I call situations in which two papers with overlapping readership areas end up with similar front-page pictures and headlines.

My favorite example of this: Right here in Southern California. My own paper, the Orange County Register, cropped in tight on that picture you just saw on the front of the New York Times while the Los Angeles Times used a picture by Luca Bruno of the Associated Press. Yet, the pictures were shot from a similar angle. And check out the headlines.

130314PopeLATimes  130314PopeSantaAnaCalif

Average daily circulation for the LAT is 616,575. The OCR circulates 280,812.

MOST INTERESTING HEADLINE OF THE DAY

Speaking of headlines, I didn’t see many clever ones today. This one from the 12,387-circulation Pocono Record of Stroudsburg, Pa., struck me as one of the best.

130314PopeStroudsburgPa

That was written by staffer Tom Ostrosky, I’m told.

BALCONY SHOTS THAT SHOWED MORE BALCONY

A few papers chose pictures that were more loosely-cropped. To show off the pageantry of the event, I’d imagine.

Three of these papers appealed to me a great deal. I liked the orderly, structured feel of the 57,710-circulation Clarion-Ledger of Jackson, Miss.

130314PopeJacksonMiss

That photo is from AFP/Getty Images. I’m not sure where this one is from because the designer of today’s Star Press of Muncie, Ind., left off the credit.

130314PopeMuncieInd

Note, however, the way the designer — Catherine Pomiecko from the Louisville Design Studio, I’m told — placed the story and sidebar into that little white square at the bottom of the picture. And then echoed that with a transparent box at the top of the picture to hold the headline.

Average daily circulation for the Star Press is 20,305.

My favorite of these pages, however — and, indeed, my favorite page of the day — is this presentation by the Advocate of Victoria, Texas.

130314PopeVictoriaTexas

Wow. Now, that’s a poster front.

Advocate editor Chis Cobler tells us:

Presentation editor Kimiko Fieg [designed the page], although we discussed it a lot as a design team.

Average daily circulation for the Advocate is 26,531.

WRAPPIN’ THE POPE

And three papers — that I know of — let their huge Pope photos spill over onto the back page of their papers, creating a huge wrap.

The first two of these suffer from the same problem: While the entire wrap is quite nice, look at what readers are getting with their page-one display:

130314PopeHoy

Yep. The picture of the back of a Cardinal’s head.

When you design page one of a broadsheet, you have to stay mindful of what’s above the fold. Ditto for a tabloid wrap — you have to remember that some readers might only see page one in a news rack or in a convenience store.

That was Hoy, the Spanish-language daily published by the Chicago Tribune. Interestingly, the Sun-Times today had the same issue.

130314PopeChicagoSunTimes

Average daily circulation for the Sun-Times is 422,335. Hoy circulates about 60,000 papers daily.

Here is the only broadsheet wrap I saw today, and you won’t see it at the Newseum. The Beaver County Times of Beaver, Pa., didn’t contribute its front page today.

130314PopeBeaverCountyPa

As the TimesEric Hall explaines:

 The newsfolk let the sports editor give it a whirl.

And, sure enough, you see Eric’s approach: This is essentially a photo illustration, with a picture of the pope at the bottom and a huge shot of the crowd as a background.

Note how the Beaver County Times took its nameplate down to tiny size and placed it at the bottom of the page.

A FOCUS ON THE FOLLOWERS

While a few papers managed to show the enormous throng in St. Peter’s Square, this one paper scored points today by focusing on the rapturous look on the face of this woman in Argentina, reveling in the news that the new Pope is from Argentina.

130314PopeBostonHerald

The photo is from Reuters. I wish we knew more of her story. Does she know the new pope? Has she attended any of his services?

Perhaps it’s not important. But as I looked through today’s pages, that one brought me to a full stop. Which is the point, of course. Great job by the 108,548-circulation Boston Herald.

With the exception of Beaver County, all of these front pages are from the Newseum. Of course.

Perhaps the most honest op-ed headline ever

Anyone can make an error leaving dummy text on a live page. I’ve even done it myself. (Got fired for it, in fact. Long story. Perhaps I’ll tell you about it sometime.)

But if there’s one paper that really shouldn’t make a mistake like this, it’s a paper that’s cut back to publication only three days a week and has laid off much of its newsroom.

130310HarrisburgDummyHeadline

A friend who does not work at the Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pa., posted that this morning via Facebook and tagged me on it. The best comment it’s accumulated so far:

Pretty surprised nobody caught that. It obviously was supposed to read, “Headline will go here on Tuesday or Thursday

Heh…

You know who else needs a copy editor?

Local TV news operations. Chicago’s WMAQ-TV in particular. And WLS-TV, also of Chicago. And Harrisburg’s Fox43 TV news. And WDAY-TV 6 News in Fargo, N.D. And Local 15 News in Mobile, Ala. And WMAR-TV in Baltimore. And WBAL-TV in Baltimore. And Fox 4 KDFW in Dallas. And KTLA channel 5 in Los Angeles. And KNBC channel 4 in Los Angeles. And KCBS channel 2 in Los Angeles. And KSDK in St. Louis. And Charlotte’s WBTV. And KXAN-TV of Austin. And WFSB channel 3 in Hartford, Conn. And KOKI-TV, Fox23 in Tulsa. And Fox23 of Tulsa again. And Huntsville’s WAFF-TV. And WSPA-TV 7 in Spartanburg, S.C. And Miami’s WSVN channel 7. And KUSA 9 News in Denver, Colo. And 7News, also in Denver. And KSL channel 5 in Salt Lake City. And KCRG of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. And WXYZ-TV in Detroit. And KGMI News Talk radio in Bellingham, Wash. And local Fox affiliates. And other local TV news operations. And CBS local media. And CBS/DC in Washington. And the web operation for DC101 radio. And the Huffington Post. And the Huffington Post again. And CNN (and CNN again)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and a huge one here)(and yet again)(and yet again) and CNN Money and CNN mobile and Fox News (and Fox News again)(and Fox News yet again)(and again!)(and again!)(and yet again!)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and again, for cryin’ out loud)(and yet again)(and again) and Fox Business and MSNBC (and MSNBC again) (and MSNBC again) (and MSNBC yet again)(and MSNBC yet again) and ABC News and NBC news and NBC News again and NBC News yet again and the Weather Channel (and the Weather Channel again)(and the Weather Channel again)(and the Weather Channel yet again) and the BBC and the BBC again and German news channel N24. And the Canadian Broadcast Corp. (and the CBC again). And Fairfax media of New Zealand. And Dagsrevyen, the evening news broadcast of the Norwegian Broadcasting Corp. And al Jazeera. And Martha Stewart’s TV operation. And the Disney Channel. And AOL. And AOL’s Patch. And Patch again. And Advance’s MLive media group. And creators of mobile apps. And Yahoo News. And Yahoo News again. And Yahoo News again. And the fictional TMI! web site on the Newsroom TV show. And Google News’ bots. And baseball jersey manufacturers. And football jersey manufacturers. And sports ticket counterfeiters. And the NCAA. And the Big 12 Conference. And Georgetown University. And Kansas State University. And the University of Iowa. And the University of North Carolina. And the University of Texas. And Nebraska Wesleyan University. And Appalachian State University. And high school diploma printers. And the New York Jets, the Minnesota Vikings, the Minnesota Twins the St. Louis Cardinals, the Seattle Mariners, the New York Yankees and the Washington Nationals (boy, do they need a copy editor). And the Brooklyn Nets. And Manchester United. And the National Hockey League (and the NHL again). And the NHL Network. And NBA Premium TV. And ESPN (and ESPN again)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and three more times!)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and yet again)(and again) and Fox Sports (and Fox Sports again)(and Fox Sports one more time)(and Fox Sports yet again)(and yet again)(and yet again). And NBC Sports. And NBC Sports again. And CBS Sportsline. And TBS Sports. And CNN.SI. And Sports Illustrated (and again) (and again). And college athletic department ticket offices. And the NCAA. And Leaf trading card company. And the Virginia general assembly. And college alumni magazines. And pharmacies. And the makers of Sudafed. And Borders bookstore. And the U.S. Postal Service. And government agencies and political candidates. And Tea Party candidates. And the Newt Gingrich campaign. And the Mitt Romney campaign. And the Mitt Romney campaign again. And the White House. And the Vice President. And the President himself. And city and county Boards of Elections. And Congressmen from South Carolina. Both the state of Pennsylvania and its department of transportation. And Costa Cruises. And Pittsburgh skywriters. And road paving contractors in Durham, N.C. and in New York City. And the city of Norfolk, Va. And the Ohio Dept. of Transportation. And the Alabama Dept. of Transportation. And the Maryland Dept. of Transportation. And the West Palm Beach, Fla., police dept. And Lakewood High School in St. Petersburg, Fla. And Sunrise-McMillan Elementary School in Fort Worth, Texas. And Canadian school districts. And planners for Charlotte, N.C.’s Festival in the Park. And the Moose lodge in Carroll, Iowa. And South African traffic cops. And the Conservation Trust of Puerto Rico. And gas stations. And billboard companies. And bumper sticker manufacturers. And sign painters. And Home Depot and manufacturers of “hoodies.“ And T-shirt designers. And more T-shirt designers. And Old Navy. And Old Navy again. And Kohl’s. And Lids. And Adidas. And Mazda. And rubber stamp designers. And glass etchers. And stone carvers. And hotels. And more hotels. And manufacturers of custom-printed hotel accessories. And Starbucks. And Wendy’s. And Applebee‘s. And DaVanni’s Pizza. And restaurants, breakfast joints, Chinese restaurants and cake decorators. And more cake decorators. And drive-in movie theater managers. And auto dealers. And auto body shops. And romance novelists. And Capcom, the makers of Resident Evil video games. And 2K Sports, the makers of NBA 2K13 video games. And the Ku Klux Klan. And American Idol. And book cover designers. And editorial cartoonists. And business page editors. And South Africa’s New Age and Sunday Independent newspapers. And City Press of Johannesburg. And Dublin’s Sunday Business Post. And the Echo of Gloucestershire, England. And the London Daily Mail. And the National Post of Toronto, Canada. And the Winnipeg Sun. And the South China Morning Post. And the Herald Sun of Melbourne, Australia. And the Air Force Times. And the Washington Post (Hey! Another repeat offender!), the Post’s Express tab (Hey! Yet another repeat offender!), the Washington Examiner, Boston’s Metro, the New York Times (Wow! Yet another repeat offender!)(Hey! A third offense!)(Hey! A fourth offense!), A.M. New York, the Los Angeles Times (and the LAT again), the New York Post, the New York Post again, the New York Post yet again, Wall Street Journal Europe, Newsday, USA Today, (and USA Today again), (and USA Today again)(and USA Today again), the Boston Globe, the Chicago Sun-Times (and yet another!), the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill., the Rochester, N.Y., Democrat & Chronicle, the Daily Mail of London, the Echo of Liverpool, England, the Seattle Times, the weekly Manila Mail of San Francisco, the Miami Herald (and again!), the Portland Oregonian, the Durham, N.C., Herald-Sun, the News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C. (and the News & Observer again!)(and again!)(and again!)(and yet again!), the Chapel Hill, N.C., News, the Times-News of Hendersonville, N.C., the Greensboro, N.C., News & Record, Advance Publications’ Birmingham design hub, the Tampa Bay Times, the Missoula, Mont., Missoulian, the Duluth, Minn., News Tribune, the Free Press of Mankato, Minn., the Springfield (Mass.) Republican, the Reformer of Brattleboro, Vt., the Bangor (Maine) Daily News, the Advocate of Stamford, Conn., the Hartford (Conn.) Courant, the Times-Record of Denton, Md., the News-Herald of Willoughby, Ohio, the Reporter of Lansdale, Pa., the Times-News of Erie, Pa., the Tribune-Review of Pittsburgh, Pa., the Wilmington, Del., News Journal, the Dispatch of Casa Grande, Ariz., the Amarillo (Texas) Globe News, the Laredo Morning Times, the El Paso Times, the Daily Telegram of Temple, Texas, the Independent of Rayne, La., the Cincinnati Enquirer, the Cleveland Heights Sun Press, the Daily Times of Weirton, W.Va., the Waynesboro News Virginian, the Virginian-Pilot (and the Virginian-Pilot again) (and the Virginian-Pilot yet again), the Des Moines (Iowa) Register, the Coon Rapids (Iowa) Enterprise, the Green Bay Press-Gazette, Gannett’s N.Y. Central Media hub, the Greenville (S.C.) News, the Gazette Journal of Reno, Nev., the Daily Herald of Provo, Utah, the Deseret News of Salt Lake City, the Salt Lake Tribune, the Fort Collins Coloradoan, the Denver Post, the Olympian of Olympia, Wash., the Anchorage (Alaska) Daily News, the Bakersfield Californian, the Pine Cone, of Carmel, Calif., the Carbondale, Ill., Southern Illinoisian, the Lakeland (Fla.) Ledger (Hey! Yet another repeat offender!) and the Canarsie Courier of New York City. And Politico. And the Associated Press. And the Associated Press again. And the Associated Press again. And the Associated Press again. And the Associated Press yet again. And the Associated Press yet again. And the Associated Press yet again. And yet again. And Mann’s Jeweler’s Accent magazine. And New Scientist magazine. And Investment News magazine. And Time magazine (and Time magazine again). And Editor & Publisher.

And, of course, I need a copy editor myself.

I’ve always needed a copy editor. Which is why you’ll see me fight so hard for them.

How East-coast newspapers played the ‘Frankenstorm’ today

I’ve been reading for days now about the tropical storm in the Caribbean that was going to head up this way next. But it’s been so cold at night here in Virginia Beach that I’ve not been taking the threat seriously.

Tropical storms just don’t venture into cold water. Do they?

But it was hard to miss this big display across the top of today’s Virginian-Pilot:

Heading our way, too. Just great.

This is the huge “Frankenstorm,” which is expected to combine in some scientific way with a cold front and become the closest thing to a “perfect storm” since, well, the Perfect Storm in October of 1991.

The Washington Post, also, gave huge play to that picture of a 1955 DeSoto threatened by a breaking wave in Cuba Wednesday, shot by Ramon Espinosa of the Associated Press…

…as did the Citizen’s Voice of Wilkes-Barre, Pa., and the Washington Examiner.

 

The lesson here: This storm is very dangerous. So, whatever you do, if you’re on the East Coast: Stay out of vintage cars this weekend.

A number of papers along the East Coast today led page one with giant maps. This one — on the front of the Asbury Park Press — is from the Associated Press.

The Morning Call of Allentown, Pa., also pushed a large map onto A1 today, pairing it with a Getty image of a tourist in Miami struggling with an umbrella.

The Courier-Post of Camden, N.J., elected to pair its AP map with a satellite photo of Hurricane Sandy.

The designers in Harrisburg, Pa., used both a satellite image and the De Soto photo.

Further north — in Waterbury, Conn. — the storm is expected to bring snow into the mix. So we’re not just talking about high, tree-downing winds and heavy, flood-inducing rain. But also icy stuff, to boot.

The paper in Hyannis, Mass., focused today on the preparations being made. The main visual was a satellite image.

The Standard-Times of New Bedford, Mass., used a stand-alone satellite image to refer to coverage inside.Take note of the interesting horizontal crop the designer there used.

What’s the next best thing to a satellite image? A picture of a meteorologist looking at a satellite image on his computer screen, of course.

The picture there is by staffer Lori Van Buren. The small map is from the AP.

Lead art today in Passaic, N.J., was of the scorched Earth left behind in Cuba by Hurricane Sandy.

What’s most intriguing there, however, is the headline. Very clever.

The map was from MCT.

The Boston Globe led page one today with a collection of two pictures, including an aftermath image from Cuba by Miguel Rubierra of Reuters.

The Star-Ledger of Newark placed its main story atop a texture-like cloud background.

The Times of Trenton, N.J., took a similar approach with a photo of wind-torn palm trees and another satellite image.

But the Boston Herald gets today’s “What, Me Worry?” prize for its treatment linking the storm to last-minute political campaigning.

Sure enough, Joe Biden is scheduled to speak at a school Saturday (70 percent chance of precipitation, wind gusts up to 30 mph) and Mitt Romney is holding a rally at a concert amphitheater Sunday (90 percent chance of rain; wind gusts up to 55 mph) — both less than five miles from my house. Despite the dire weather warnings that are posted for this weekend.

I hate to agree with the Boston Herald. But I wonder if this is nature’s way of rejecting both campaigns.

Despite the little bit of fun I’m having here with politicians and DeSotos, forecasters are saying this storm is no joking matter. Hopefully, it’ll veer off or won’t absorb as much as experts think and it’ll just fizzle. Then, we can all joke about how overhyped this thing was.

In the meantime, warnings were posted this afternoon all over Hampton Roads — and, as you can see from the latest official guesstimate, we’re not expected to get a direct hit at all.

Yet, the forecast for Virginia Beach is pretty dire. I can only imagine what it might be like for folks up in Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

In the meantime…

  • Don’t wait on the wires to move the latest GOES satellite images. Go pick them up yourself directly from the source. You’re probably looking for “large image” under “East Links,” at the upper right. Click on the image itself for a .MOV file you can post on your web site. Everything there is free to use. Credit “NOAA-NASA GOES project.”

The images there are much higher resolution — and cover

more territory — than this one. I cropped this one.

Sandy forecast models posted at the Wunderground this afternoon.

All these pages are from the Newseum. Of course.

A look at today’s Neil Armstrong front pages

Most folks did pretty well on page one today. There were relatively few mistakes and flubs.

I’ve love to take credit for helping that happen — with my post yesterday afternoon — but, most likely, all the folks out there in newspaper design land have simply become more aware of the common pitfalls.

My hat is off to you all.

FLORIDA TODAY

Melbourne, Fla.

Circulation: 63,087

Folks in Florida had a bit of a problem on page one today. Not only did Neil Armstrong — who spent a lot of time around Cape Canaveral — pass away, but also there is the Republican National Convention this week in Tampa. And then there is the little matter of a tropical storm just off the southern coast.

I was just a little disappointed this morning when I found one of the nation’s larger space-oriented newpapers — Florida Today — with not a darned thing about Armstrong on page one.

Wow. It couldn’t have been a deadline issue. I guess all the other news pushed Armstrong off the front or something. I shrugged and moved on.

Oh, ye of little faith. Turns out, Armstrong was pushed off the front. Into a gorgeous four-page special section that wrapped around today’s paper.

Michael Babin of Gannett’s Nashville Design Studio tells us:

With Isaac setting its sights on Southwest Florida, the death of Neil Armstrong and the uncertainty surrounding the GOP Convention, it was quite the day in the Nashville Design Studio.

Florida Today gave its Space Coast readers a special 4-page wrap celebrating the life of Neil Armstrong, while Fort Myers continued its strong coverage of Isaac, providing plenty of region-by-region updates, forecasts and storm preparedness tips for its readership.

Special thanks goes to designers Chris Bistline, Bill Campling, Melissa Koenigsberg, John Maynard, Michelle Irwin, Bill Wachsberger, Josh Ulrich, George Brooks, Stefanie Romba and Kayla Golliher — as well as the entire staffs in Brevard and Fort Myers — for pulling together so many moving pieces/parts in such an extraordinary way.

Here are the inside pages. Click these — or any page today — for a larger view.

 

The back page used one of the very few pictures taken by Buzz Aldrin of Armstrong on the moon on July 20, 1969. The design team turned the page sideways, ran the picture huge and got the hell out of its way.

And it surprises me how well this works. Because I didn’t think it’d look so good, with the lens flare and all. Which is why I told folks in my post yesterday to not fool with this picture.

Hey, I’m delighted to be wrong. And this is where we’ll start our romp through today’s front pages…

NEIL BY THE LEM

Neil Armstrong carried the primary camera that day. Buzz Aldrin also shot pictures, but he was assigned to photograph specific technical details, rather than tourist-like shots of Neil on the moon.

Being a technical-minded fellow — even before Apollo 11, Buzz held a Ph.D. in aeronautical engineering — he did just what he was told. To the chagrin of historians and news designers everywhere ever since.

Despite my advice yesterday, a number of papers used this picture large yesterday. Perhaps you’ve heard of a few of them. Like the New York Times (circulation 1,586,757) and the Washington Post (circulation 507,615)…

 

…or the Cleveland Plain Dealer (circulation 246,571) and the Dallas Morning News (405,349).

 

I found four more papers using this picture on page one today:

From left to right: The Bakersfield Californian, the Portland Oregonian, the Asbury Park Press and the Daily Record of Parsippany, N.J.

STILL FRAMES FROM THE 16MM MOVIE REEL

Another picture I mentioned yesterday but also suggested you stay away from: A still frame from the 16mm movie reel that was shot by a camera rigged in the cockpit of the lunar lander. That reel contains footage of both astronauts on the lunar surface. But I didn’t think the fuzzy, washed-out images would play well on page one today.

Wrong again. As you can see, the News Tribune of Duluth, Minn. — circulation 30,606 — managed to use pictures from this film quite well today.

Newsday of Melville, N.Y. — circulation 397,973 — cropped in on just Armstrong for a nice front-page promo.

Four more papers used the picture as lead art on page one today: The Journal Gazette of Fort Wayne, Ind., the Times of Trenton, N.J., the New Mexican of Santa Fe…

 

…and the News of Opelika, Ala. The South Bend (Ind.) Tribune and the Post-Dispatch of St. Louis used the picture as skybox art.

AFTER THE MOONWALK

You’ll recall one of the pictures I recommended you use is this great shot of Neil Armstrong in the lunar lander, immediately after the historic moonwalk.

Luckily, the AP also moved that picture, meaning you didn’t have to go digging for it.

My favorite Neil Armstrong page of the day, in fact, used this picture.

That’s a wonderful job by the Forum of Fargo, N.D. — a paper that works its way into my blog more and more these days. Average daily circulation for the Forum is 45,298.

Other nice displays of this picture were by the Herald of Everett, Wash. (circulation 46,481), the Virginian-Pilot of Norfolk (circulation 142,476)…

 

…the News Tribune of Tacoma, Wash. (circulation 78,453) and the Spokesman-Review of Spokane, Wash. (circulation 69,161).

 

The 401,120-circulation Denver Post wins my admiration for the most unusual headline of the day.

Other papers using this picture on page one today:

ARMSTRONG’S OFFICIAL NASA PORTRAIT

Another picture I didn’t recommend yesterday was Armstrong’s pre-Apollo 11 official NASA portrait. Mostly because this is probably one of the most common images of Armstrong your readers have seen over the years. My feeling was: Given the depth of the NASA archives, we can do much better than this.

However, a few newspapers chose to lead their front page with this picture anyway. And doggoned if the results weren’t bad at all.

Here are a couple of big-city tabloids: The Daily News of New York — circulation 579,636 — and the Chicago Sun-Times, circulation 422,335.

 

A couple of broadsheets: the Dispatch of Casa Grande, Ariz., circulation 8,458, and the Record-Courier of Ravenna, Ohio, circulation 17,328.

 

Other papers using the portrait: Sister papers in Moline and Rock Island, Ill., the Gazette of Texarkana, Texas…

…the Caller-Times of Corpus Christi, Texas, the Press-Citizen of Iowa City, the Press of Johnson City, Tenn., and the Standard of Aiken. S.C.

THE ICONIC ‘FOOTPRINT ON THE MOON’ SHOT

One of the things I had specifically suggested you stay away from last night was the iconic picture of a lone footprint on the moon.

If you’re using to use it in an illustrative way, then fine. But most of the time I see this picture used, it’s used improperly. For starters, I often see it upside-down. And, in fact, the version the Associated Press sent out was upside-down.

The one you see there is correct — scanned by NASA directly from the negative.

Secondly, I see this often captioned as either a) Neil Armstrong’s very first footprint on the moon, or b) “a footprint left by one of the astronauts of the Apollo 11 mission.” Which is, in fact, the way the AP captioned that picture Saturday.

And that’s baloney. The footprint belongs to Buzz Aldrin. So does the boot that you see in the fourth and fifth pictures of the sequence he photographed himself, about 40 minutes after he stepped out of the lunar lander.

   

 

NASA very carefully reconstructed what happened on the moon every moment of every mission. Most of that material is available to you in the form of “surface journals” that include transcripts and links to each picture or film clip shot. Everything is carefully labeled — NASA knows who shot which picture, with which camera and which roll of film it was on.

None of that is open for debate. Yet, Associated Press moves an upside-down picture and an inaccurate cutline. Sigh…

Because AP got it wrong, perhaps I shouldn’t blame papers for using this shot incorrectly. Still, wrong is wrong. The only way we can hope for AP getting its act together is to go on the record with the errors we find.

Not only did the 16,696 Quincy (Ill.) Herald-Whig run the picture upside-down — the way AP moved it — they also implied with the headline this was, in fact, Armstrong’s “one small step.”

Quincy certainly wasn’t the only paper to use this picture. Here are the Citizen Tribune of Morristown, Tenn. (circulation 18,923) , and the Quad-City Times of Davenport, Iowa (circulation 46,824).

The 94,016-circulation Daily News of Los Angeles used the picture. And so did all the Daily News‘ sister papers, including the Long Beach Press-Telegram (circulation 82,556)…

 

 

…the Daily Breeze of Torrence (circulation 75,352), the Daily Bulletin of Ontario (circulation 61,699) and the Sun of San Bernardino (circulation 56,456).

Other papers going using the footprint prominently today: The Citizens’ Voice of Wilkes-Barre, Pa., the Times-News of Twin Falls, Idaho…

 

…the Journal Star of Peoria, Ill., the Times of Valdosta, Ga., and the Herald of Brownsville, Texas.

And I’ll have to pick on my former colleagues at the Virginian-Pilot. I loved their front page today. And I loved the look of the jump page inside. However, not only did they run the footprint flopped…

…they also ran this cutline with it. Which is just flat-out wrong.

BUZZ STANDING BY THE FLAG

The thing I feared most was a newspaper running a picture of Buzz Aldrin on page one today and either a) claiming or b) implying it’s a picture of Neil Armstrong. As we’ve said, there are hardly any pictures of Neil on the surface of the moon.

Sure enough, that’s just the trap that ensnared the Lima News of Ohio, circulation 29,120.

Granted, there is no cutline that says that’s Neil Armstrong standing by the flag in that picture. But, of course, it’s not Neil. So there’s no reason to use this picture at all.

Boo, hiss, Lima.

UPDATE – 5:45 p.m.

My pal Chris Olds of Beckett Media points out that Lima is minutes away from Wapakoneta, Armstrong’s home town. Making this error all the more worse.

Ditto for these sister papers in Massachusetts — the Herald News of Fall River (circulation 14,979) and the Gazette of Taunton (circulation 6,703). Neither should have used that picture in its skybox today.

I got all worked up about the New York Post — a paper I don’t exactly admire in the first place. I was halfway into writing a scathing rebuke of these guys before my eyes finally landed on something in the picture that caused me to stop.

Can you spot it, too?

Check out the flag. It’s at half-staff. Meaning this is a photoillustration.

Granted, the “photoillustration” credit is very tiny and runs vertically up the left side of the art. But still. One can interpret this as Buzz, saluting the flag at half-mast for his fallen commander.

So I’m going to give the Post a free pass on this one. Plus, brownie points for being so clever.

Average daily circulation for the New York Post is 555,327.

TODAY’S BIGGEST BLUNDER

I hate to accuse anyone of making a dumbass mistake. But there’s really no other way to describe the boneheaded blunder atop today’s El Paso Times.

Here’s a closer look at the Neil Armstrong skybox promo.

Which features a nice, cutout picture. Of Michael Collins.

Collins was the third member of the Apollo 11 crew. He’s the one who stayed in lunar orbit in the Apollo capsule while Aldrin and Armstrong landed on the moon.

Needless to say, Michael Collins did not die Saturday.

Here is the Associated Press picture from which the Times extracted that promo. The picture appears to be captioned correctly. I have no freakin’ idea what would cause the designer to cut out the wrong astronaut.

Unless he was distracted, perhaps, by Buzz Aldrin’s hairpiece. 

Average daily circulation for the El Paso Times is 70,450.

REACHING DEEPER INTO THE NASA ARCHIVES

I started out this post by explaining how disappointed I was — originally — with Florida Today‘s front-page presentation of Armstrong’s passing. Until I found out that today’s paper was wrapped in a special Neil Armstrong special section.

Double-ditto on that with the Houston Chronicle. Armstrong lived in Houston during the time in his life when he became famous in the first place. But all he gets is a strip across the top of the page?

UPDATE – 7 p.m.

Gawker wasn’t very impressed with the Chronicle‘s headline.

Perhaps the Chronicle also ran a special section or a wrap today. If they did and if you have PDFs you can send me, please do.

Average daily circulation of the Chronicle is 384,007.

Meanwhile, I was delighted with the treatment on page one of the paper where Armstrong has lived for the past several decades: Cincinnati. The Enquirer skipped all the standard Apollo 11-era pictures — which we’ve seen so many times over the years — and instead used something from Neil’s previous NASA mission, Gemini 8.

Average daily circulation for the Enquirer is 144,165.

The News & Advance of Lynchburg, Va. — circulation 26,092 — used that same file photo today, but with not nearly as much bang.

 

The paper where I worked 20 years ago — the Herald of Rock Hill, S.C. — reached deep into the archives to find this picture of the three Apollo 11 astronauts making their way out of the preparation facility and to the van that would drive them to their launch vehicle on July 16, 1969.

The coolest thing about Rock Hill’s coverage today, however, is the local angle the paper took with its lead story. Charlie Duke — who walked on the moon in Apollo 16 and who served as the official voice of mission control during the actual landing of Apollo 11 — is from nearby Lancaster. The story works in Duke’s memories of that night.

Average daily circulation for the Herald is 21,063.

Also leading with that same picture today: The Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pa., and the Star of Anniston, Ala.

 

A few other papers also reached deep down to find pictures of Armstrong during his Gemini 8 days.

From left to right: The News Tribune of Jefferson City, Mo., the Post-Standard of Syracuse, N.Y., and the Daily Sun of the Villages, Fla.

Two papers led today with pictures of the Earth rising over the moon, as seen from lunar orbit by the astronauts aboard Apollo 11. On the left is the Stockton (Calif.) Record. On the right is the Tribune of Bismarck, N.D.

 

This worked fine… as long as the picture really is from Apollo 11. As opposed to the more iconic, more famous picture of Earthrise shot by Apollo 8. I have no reason to believe these pictures were not shot from Apollo 11, so I’ll give these pages praise here.

Granted, though, after all I’ve written here, I’m too tired to go check.

And just a handful of papers led today with nice portraits of Armstrong shot fairly recently. The picture you see here on the front of the Dayton Daily News — circulation 93,425 — is a file shot by staffer Chris Stewart.

That same picture — and page design — was also used by Dayton’s sister papers in Springfield, Middletown and Hamilton.

And that brings us to my second-favorite front page of the day: This one by the Journal & Courier of Lafayette, Ind. — the home of Purdue University, where Armstrong attended college.

The wonderful portrait there was shot by Cliff Owen of the Associated Press during a Senate committee hearing three months ago.

Average daily circulation for the Journal & Courier is 25,531.

All of these newspaper pages — with the exception of the Florida Today material and the Virginian-Pilot page I obviously photographed myself — are from the Newseum. Of course.

A baker’s dozen of interesting, illustrative page-one treatments

Oh there was some fabulous work out there on the front of the nation’s newspapers today.

Let’s take a look at a few of the more illustrative ones, shall we?

KANSAS CITY STAR

Kansas City, Mo.

Circulation: 200,365

The story in Kansas City today is about how a four-year-old girl was found malnourished, and taken from her mother. A year later, her mother was deemed fit again and the girl was returned to her home. And then she vanished from the system.

Another five years later, authorities find her locked in a closet. The girl — now 10 years old — weighed just 32 lbs.

How does a girl like this “slip through the cracks”? And how does a newspaper illustrate this story without identifying the girl?

By showing a girl slipping through the cracks.

Wonderful work there by Héctor Casanova. Find the sad story here by staffers Laura Bauer and Dawn Bormann.

STAR ADVERTISER

Honolulu, Hawaii

Circulation: 124,000

In Honolulu today, the Star Advertiser also had one of those “impossible to illustrate” stories about an increase in suicides. Luckily, staffer Bryant Fukutomi was on the case.

Notice the fabulous and subtle use of color in both of those pages. We’ll talk more about color in a few minutes…

COLORADOAN

Fort Collins, Colo.

Circulation: 19,864

You’re aware, of course, of the fires that have afflicted the state of Colorado this past month. The Coloradoan today compares the state to “Paradise in a Powder Keg.”

Fairly simple — even rendered in 3D — and effective. My only beef is that the illustration wasn’t credited.

VIRGINIAN-PILOT

Norfolk, Va.

Circulation: 142,476

The Virginian-Pilot today examined the devastating effects of wind and water from last August’s Hurricane Irene on Pamlico Sound in North Carolina, just South of Hampton Roads. The package included wonderful time-lapse-type graphics (find the interactive version here) and this very cool — and violent — front-page illustration.

I presume that was designed by Sam Hundley.

PRESS-TRIBUNE

Nampa, Idaho

Circulation: 19,900

Among the new laws taking effect in Idaho today: One banning texting while driving.

The front-page illustration is by staffer Glen Bruderer.

ARGUS LEADER

Sioux Falls, S.D.

Circulation: 32,192

The story today in Sioux Falls, S.D., was home sales. They’re finally bouncing back.

While this isn’t the most imaginative illustration ever, let me ask you this: How would you illustrate rising home prices?

The house illustration is perfectly adequate. The arrows serve as a visually interesting way of delivering “big number” info.

I wonder if shadowing might have been added to the arrows to match what’s happening to the house illustration.

What I like here: The (uncredited) designer refrained from using four different colors. The shades of grey/blue help hold the package together.

HERALD

Monterey, Calif.

Circulation: 23,765

Speaking of color, check out the palette used today by James Herrera of the Monterey Herald.

The illustration itself is clever and effective. But the colors really make this work.

PATRIOT-NEWS

Harrisburg, Pa.

Circulation: 70,446

The Harrisburg, Pa., Patriot-News led today with a story about the culture of silence surrounding Penn State University, which is what led to the big cover-up of the child sex abuse scandal there over the past decade or so.

The illustration is the old tape-over-the-mouth trick — an effective way of illustrating such a topic. What made this one sing, again, was the way the (uncredited) designer used color. Or, rather, did not use color.

The designer pulled all the color out of the illustration, which was probably stock.

UPDATE – Meg Lavey tells me a) The centerpiece was designed by Chris Boehke and b)…

The illustration, I was told, was not stock art. It was someone in our circulation department who posed for it.

He then added a Instagram-like treatment, a slight warm-grey tone and, of course, the blue Penn State logo atop the duct tape.

Very nice. T, I’m told.

In case you’re wondering: Yes, the story on the right of the page does indeed suggest that coach Joe Paterno knew much more about Jerry Sandusky‘s misdeeds than he claimed. Just when you think you’ve heard all you can hear about this story, it just gets sadder and sadder.

SUN JOURNAL

Lewiston, Maine

Circulation: 33,900

A similar visual trick was used by yet another uncredited designer on the front of today’s Sun Journal of Lewiston, Maine.

The baby is, most likely, stock art and, most likely, color. The designer turned the art black-and-white but then colored the diaper to carry through the color palette from the headline and the bar chart atop the package.

TELEGRAPH HERALD

Dubuque, Iowa

Circulation: 25,588

And here’s one more example of great illustrative use of color: Check out how this pie chart echos the colors found in the stock Getty photo up top.

This is how you use color effectively, folks. Terrific examples today. My compliments to the chefs — who were, for the most part, uncredited.

NEWS-GAZETTE

Champaign, Ill.

Circulation: 41,026

The Champaign, Ill., paper today explained how electricity is generated and distributed via the power “grid.” The paper’s editors elected to do this in an illustrated, alternative story form that zig-zagged its way across the front page.

Nice work by Patrick Wade — who wrote the text — and Joel Leizer, who drew the art and, I presume, designed the centerpiece package.

STAR-TELEGRAM

Fort Worth, Texas

Circulation: 195,455

The Star-Telegram of Fort Worth today wanted to illustrate the dangers faced by pedestrians in an area where sidewalks fall apart from overuse and neglect.\

The solution was simple: Each one of these little “pedestrian crossing” icons represents 50 deaths.

The black icons are statewide. The red ones are in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

LAS VEGAS SUN

Las Vegas, Nev.

Circulation: 220,619

And while this front page isn’t an illustration, this wonderful aerial picture by the Las Vegas Sun‘s Sam Morris is certainly used in an illustrative way today, spread across the page in a poster-sized treatment.

That was, in fact, just one of ten wonderful art-like, aerial pictures posted back in February by Sam to promote a local art exhibit. Which ended two months ago.

Find the online slideshow here.

All of these front pages are from the Newseum. Of course.

The good, the bad and the most interesting health-care court ruling front pages

One of the reasons I love the little 26,531-circulation Victoria (Texas) Advocate is because the paper does a pretty great job now. But it’s always looking to do better.

Case in point: I heard this morning via Twitter from Chris Cobler, the editor of the Advocate. Chris writes:

And my reply is: You did pretty well today, Chris. You recognized right away that the protest shots that were moving all over the wires yesterday was not a good choice to lead today’s front page. In your case, you looked to add a little analysis to the decision.

So you went in the right direction. And sometimes, text is the way to carry the front. As you’ll see in this (admittedly overlong) blog post today.

The quibble I have with your front today, Chris, is clutter. Your page is well-organized. But that lead element at the top — the mug shots of the Supreme Court — could have worked with less ink on it.

The good news: Although it had major impact at the top of your page, that would have been a pretty easy — and quick — fix. You had your fundamentals right. And that’s the important thing.

Which leads us into today’s lesson…

I was awfully disappointed in the choice of lead art by most papers today. Those protest shots were all taken by 10 or 11 a.m. Thursday. Meaning they were nearly 24 hours old by the time our readers today saw them. Not a great way to sell newspapers, I think.

 

And most main headlines I saw today simply told what happened yesterday. The important stuff — how the decision is being spun, what happens next, how it affects the reader — was pushed into smaller headlines or sidebars or even off the front page.

And those were the most important things to push at the top of page one today!

 

____________________

MILLIONS OF MUG SHOTS

Let’s start where Chris left off — with pages built around mug shots of the Supreme Court justices.

A number of papers stripped the mug shots across the top of page one today. Some divided the mugs into “for” and “against,” like Pittsburgh did (below right). Others made the readers hunt for that info in the little cutline labels (Bangor, Maine; below left).

 

Two of the nation’s largest newspapers put this kind of treatment on page one today. The Washington Post ran its mug shot collection below the obligatory protest photo…

…while the New York Times built its own into a centerpiece. This kind of thing is very unusual for the Times, I think it’s fair to say.

What did both of those pages have in common? They kept their little mug shot graphic treatments as clean as possible. There’s a minimum of lines, boxes and rules. And there’s plenty of white space to give the mugs some air. The little semi-cutout treatment helps reduce clutter, as well.

The Denver Post today ran two mugshot graphics across the top of today’s front, in order to show how the court voted on two issues.

Note how the greyed-out effect makes this a quicker read.

While the Newark paper made their group shot of the SCOTUS — little little labels — into lead art.

The newly-converted-to-tabloid Burlington, Vt., paper also made a huge, reversed (for extra oomph) headline and a collection of mugs its lead art today.

Every one of these pages worked well. Just like I think Victoria’s page worked.

Or, rather, might have worked a little better without all the boxes and lines. But you get my point.

Here’s one — from Gainesville, Ga. — that I thought was less than successful:

The problems? First of all, the designer “ghosted” an image of the Supreme Court building into the background of that package. I’m not sure how effective that is at telling the story. It harms readability and it’s also an awfully “old-fashioned” approach.

Secondly, I take issue with the main headline. It refers to state officials, while the main visual shows the Supreme Court of the United States. This makes for a huge disconnect between the main head and the main art.

While we’re on the subject of SCOTUS photos, let’s look at two pages that focused on the “swing vote” in this particular decision, Chief Justice John Roberts. Bakersfield turned Roberts into today’s huge centerpiece art.

The problem I have with that page: From what I can tell, that’s a photo of when Roberts was sworn in as a justice, back in 2005. That seems like a bit of a stretch. Was there nothing more recent than this?

And while Hartford didn’t run a photo of Roberts out front today, it did make him the subject of its main headline.

I’m not sure that worked at all. Better if there was some way of working either a big photo of Roberts into that package. Or, at least, including a mug shot of some kind.

__________________

POLITICS OF THE DAY

I don’t have to tell you that the subject of affordable health care — like so may other topics in this country — has become way too politicized. A number of papers today dove into the political waters today by taking that bigger-picture look at Thursday’s court decision.

And, in some cases, a few of these papers even seemed to take sides.

The Allentown, Pa., paper didn’t take sides. But it made it clear: This wasn’t just a landmark court decision. It was a political win for the President.

The Portland Oregonian made the same point and added a health-care pun as a bonus.

This one caused me to stop and scratch what’s left of the hair on my head.

A “Hallelujah moment“?

I like this front page quite a bit — it’s clean and bold and the typography and colors are just wonderful. And I also like the gentle pun.

But wow — I’d think anyone of a conservative bent would boil over when they saw it. I wonder if the editor of Newsday got calls today.

In that magical world of New York City tabloids, of course, just about anything goes.

Most papers tried to play it much straighter, of course. Many focused on the fact that Republicans are pledging to either a) defeat the President this fall, b) repeal the legisation, or c) both.

Canton, Ohio warns us all: This ain’t over yet.

The Cincinnati Enquirer made the conservative backlash the main story today.

And a number of papers followed along these lines — at least with their main headlines.

Great Falls, Mont.:

St. Paul, Minn.:

Kalamazoo, Mich:

Minneapolis, Minn.:

San Antonio, Texas:

Everett, Wash.:

That last one struck me oddly. That sounds like it’s edging a bit towards advocating for the conservative point of view. If that’s intentional, then that’s fine. But I suspect it may not have been intentional.

The headline afront today’s Gainesville, Fla., paper seemed to put just a bit too much emphasis on the part of the ruling that limits an expansion of Medicaid.

This caught my eye because no one else really did this in their main headline today.

The headline used by Syracuse also struck me as odd:

The decision ignites new debate? Really? You mean no one was debating health care before Thursday morning?

And the main headline on the front of the tiny Twin Falls, Idaho, paper nearly made me laugh out loud by calling the decision “a precarious situation.”

Yes, Tea Party-types like the man pictured there might consider this ruling “precarious.” But I think the rest of us regard it as politics as usual. Or what passes for “usual” in these days of extreme political polarization.

The Washington Times — to the surprise of no one, perhaps — screams the nation was stunned by the decision.

The New York Post took the opportunity to have quite a bit of right-wing fun with the story.

Talk about a political spin: According to the Boston Herald, this decision gives Mitt Romney just the fodder he needs for a vigorous race this fall.

And, at first glance, this front-page editorial by tbt — the youth-oriented tabloid published by the Tampa Bay Times of St. Petersburg, Fla. — seems to be directed against the ruling and against the health care legislation.

In fact, the editorial is for it. I’m not quite sure if the disconnect is a) intentional or b) only in my mind.

_________________________

PUSHING THE STORY FORWARD

I think the best way to handle the story today was to push it forward: Rather than focus on the politics or analyze how the ruling went down — that’s great material for inside — spend your page-one real estate explaining what this means to the reader and how this will affect her.

If you can do this with a strong local bent, then so much the better.

There’s no “what happened yesterday” headline afront today’s Fort Lauderdale newspaper.

Now, granted, I think the design of that centerpiece package is a little scattered. I’d love to have inserted vertical rules between the “if you have insurance” and “if you don’t boxes, as well as between the main copy and the little sidebar down the left. But the point is: This package told readers just what they needed to know today: Why should I care?

The Indianapolis Star did much the same today.

My two complaints here: 1) There’s just a bit too much text. Too much text will scare off most readers. And 2) The headline is very close to advocating for the newly affirmed law. Better to keep it more neutral, I think.

The centerpiece package on the front of today’s Chattanooga paper might have used a bit more structure — trims or rules or some other device — to make it seem less text-heavy.

But again: The content seems right and the direction is spot-on.

Las Vegas built its front around a series of iconesque pieces of stock art — in essence, building a graphic.

The Seattle Times did the same, but then used reverse bars to try to group its text boxes into categories.

This, in fact, did give the Times‘ centerpiece a little more structure and made for a better reading experience.

I don’t like the way two short stories are crammed into the lead story space here. But I love the right side of the package on the front of today’s Poughkeepsie, N.Y., paper.

What it means to individuals. What it means to businesses. What it means to hospitals.

This is what I’m talking about when I refer to structure. This is readable. Very much so.

And notice: The lack of a dominant image doesn’t really hurt this page at all.

My old friends in Des Moines did want a dominant image today, so they went with (what I presume is) stock art.

It almost worked.

The problem: The skews on the right side of the package makes that “10 ways” sidebar a little hard to read. I wonder if this might have worked better if the huge icon were just a bit smaller.

What’s very good there, though: The localized headline. The state prepares to deal with the fallout from this decision.

The same Gannett Design Studio that produced that last page also designed this one, for Iowa City. To some extent, I think this one might have worked a little better.

Clean. White space. Easy to read.

Look at this tab illustration by AmNewYork. Note how the headline is written about you.

That’s the secret to these headlines. What does this court ruling mean for us?

Here’s just the headline from Salem, Oregon:

Gadsen, Ala.:

Birmingham, Ala.:

And Rochester, N.Y.:

Also cool to get out front — if you can — are local voices. Note how the Connecticut Post pushed its protest shots inside — if it used them at all — and built its front page around a local doctor and local medical patients.

Ditto for the Detroit Free Press.

These editors and designers knew the protest art from outside the Supreme Court building would be way too old to lead page one today. So they looked for ways to build their front pages around local folks who will be affected by the law.

My favorite of these pages: The News Journal of Wilmington, Del.

Mostly because of that nice picture by staffer Robert Craig.

And while I don’t particularly think this page works very well, look what Medford, Oregon tried today: It built its entire front around local quotes about the law and the court decision.

It was a great idea. But, as you can see, the result was awfully cluttered. Perhaps if the mug shots were a little smaller — meaning we could have had a little more white space between them — the centerpiece might be a little kinder on the eye.

The summary rail down the right side was a little too jammed, as well. Trims might have been made here.

But the idea was sound.

Now, speaking of clutter…

________________

TOO MUCH CLUTTER

Many papers were very ambitious about what they wanted to put out front today. That’s a good thing.

But in several cases, papers either tried to pack too much stuff into their lead packages. Or they didn’t take the opportunity to do a little trimming or use a little white space.

The result, as we’ve seen in several examples already, is cluttered. And it’s difficult to attract the reader’s eye with a cluttered page.

Here’s one example from Johnson City, Tenn.

If the designers could have dumped the shot of the building, run the SCOTUS group shot across the width of the package and then put the two stories side-by-side, this might have worked a bit better.

But someone felt the need to force the Supreme Court photo into that page. To the detriment of the page.

This page, too — from Ventura, Calif. — simply has too much going on.

By themselves, each element might work well. But together? Yikes.

The paper in Youngstown, Ohio, used a graphic treatment down the left side of its lead package and an actual graphic across the bottom.

What went wrong here: The two promos that were jammed into the top of the package. It was just too much.

Daytona Beach today went with what I’d try to describe as a collection of pictures and mug shots.

It’s a little cleaner than the last few pages we saw. But I think there were simply too many elements here to make this work.

And I was concerned about these three pages, which have a) Very small pictures, and b) a lot of text.

   

Those are all three Cox Communications newspapers, which are in the process of consolidating their design, graphics and copy desks this summer.

I was hoping that hubbing these papers might open up the design a little more. But perhaps it won’t. Sigh.

___________________

THEY TRIED TOO HARD

And the lack of strong art today as noted by Victoria’s Chris Cobler resulted in a number of papers trying hard — way too hard, perhaps — to build something around which to build a front-page centerpiece.

The designers in Stroudsberg, Pa., for example: They dove into the stock art library pull a prescription pad, a judge’s gavel and a huge, 3D check mark.

I’m sorry. But I think a protest shot from Thursday morning might have been more effective.

I applaud the effort on this piece by the Gannett Design Studio in Asbury Park for the East Brunswick, N.J., paper.

I applaud the effort. But not necessarily the result.

At the very least, there was no reason to fade the bottom of the art.

The folks in Longview, Texas, thought to bring “Lady Justice” into the mix.

Note the doctor’s mask on Lady Justice. Also note the way the editors wrote the headline to make the package work better.

Good try. I think.

The News-Times of Danbury, Conn., went with a more illustrative style for its gavel icon.

Note how the little gavel is striking the headline.

Again: I think they were trying just a little too hard here.

The Shreveport, La., paper went with a faux EKG across the top of its package to signal: This is about health care.

And remember that big question mark/caduceus icon we saw on the front of the Des Moines paper. Well, if using that is a good idea, then using it nine times must be a fabulous idea!

The rail down the right might have worked better with simple bullets or larger lead-in text.

Also, if you feel you must have art overlap your photos, at least turn your drop-shadow to “multiply.”

_______________________

I’M PUZZLED BY HEADLINES

I have to admit, I’m bad about writing question headlines myself. But I’ve been coached — and, sometimes threatened — not to write them.

My opinion: If the “question” is too obvious, you’re not just voicing the reader’s concern. You’re also looking a little silly. It’s kind of a “Duh!” headline, if you know what I mean.

Sure, we’re all wondering what’s next with the health care law and its implementation. But I’d argue a “What’s next?” headline today is just a little too obvious. Or, at the very least, a little too broad.

Yet, there were a bunch of question heads today. From the San Francisco Chronicle

…the Salisbury (N.C.) Post

…the Sioux City (Iowa) Journal

…the Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Gazette

…the Harrisburg, Pa., Patriot-News

…and the Fort Collins Coloradoan.

I rather liked the “cheat” the folks in Arlington Heights, Ill., used today. This is basically a question headline. But there’s no question mark. Therefore, the paper is telling me what’s going to happen next, as opposed to looking like they don’t have a clue.

I was very surprised today by the number of papers using the word “Obamacare” in their main headlines. I’m under the impression this was a term that is mostly used by Republicans as an attempt at disparagement.

If that’s the case — and that’s a big “if” — then the term has no place in a lead headline on page one. If a newspaper is trying to remain politically neutral, I mean.

Yet, the word was all over the place. Here’s the Sandusky (Ohio) Register

…the Boulder, Colo., Daily Camera

The Intelligencer Journal/New Era of Lancaster, Pa….

…the Bucks County Courier Times of Levittown, Pa….

…the Long Beach, Calif., Press-Telegram

…the Decatur (Ala.) Daily

…the Grand Island (Neb.) Independent

…the Prescott, Ariz, Daily Courier

…the Massillon, Ohio, Independent

…the Lorain, Ohio, Morning Journal

…the Pascagoula Mississippi Press

…the Lubbock (Texas) Avalanche-Journal

…the Los Angeles Daily News

…the Fort Smith, Ark., Times Record

…and the Grand Junction, Colo., Daily Sentinel.

Perhaps this is a like Ronald Reagan‘s old Strategic Defense Initiative, which nearly everyone eventually called his “Star Wars” plan. Perhaps so many folks out there — on either side of the ideological spectrum — call the Affordable Health Care Act “Obamacare” that it’s OK to use the term in a headline.

If that’s the case, then I’d feel better seeing it in quote marks. Like so:

The Bozeman (Mont.) Daily Chronicle

…the Johnstown, Pa., Tribune-Democrat

…the Dover/New Philadelphia, Ohio, Times-Reporter

…the Pittsburgh (Pa.) Tribune-Review

…the Lodi, Calif., News-Sentinel

…the Brainerd (Minn.) Dispatch

…the Florida Times-Union of Jacksonville, Fla….

…and the Ottawa (Kan.) Herald.

But at least these headlines say something. This next one says nothing at all, I’d argue.

I hate to embarrass anyone, so I won’t tell you that headline came from Fort Myers, Fla.

What I really liked today, however, were a number of headlines that presumed the readers are not dummies and that they had already heard about the ruling. Sure, the decks give you the entire story. But the headline here — in this case, from Hendersonville, N.C. — says simply “It stands.

Sam thing here from the paper in Spartanburg, S.C.

Granted, these are still backward-looking pages with backward-looking lead art. But I think this approach to the main headlines shows promise.

Here is Express, the commuter tab published by the Washington Post.

And here is the Boston Globe.

Some good ideas there, I think.

___________________________

THE DAY’S TEN BEST FRONT PAGES

So, after all that… Are you still awake? Are you ready for my picks of the day’s best ten pages?

Here goes…

VIRGINIAN-PILOT

Norfolk, Va.

Circulation 142,476

Is anyone surprised to find the Virginian-Pilot at the top of this list? The Pilot nearly always does a superb job of presenting the days’ news. The bigger the news, the quicker the Pilot rises to the task.

Ace A1 designer Robert Suhay was responsible for this one, I’m told.

Note the features: A headline that assumes you’ve already heard the news by now. A brief collection of SCOTUS mugs across the top, summarizing their positions. A collection of photos that round up the day’s events. Three stories that 1) Tell the news, 2) Provides the statewide local angle, and 3) Offer up “how it affects me” info in an easy-to-read, Q&A format.

What makes this all work is plenty of structure and plenty of white space between the elements. That keeps it all from becoming too cluttered.

Wonderful work, as usual.

SALT LAKE TRIBUNE

Salt Lake City, Utah

Circulation: 110,546

Another nice, clean page with plenty of structure and plenty of white space. While I’m not crazy about the protest shot, at least there’s an unusual, horizontal crop on it to give it some visual interest.

My favorite two features of this page: 1) I love the headline. “Curveball” does a great job of summing up the morning’s news. And 2) The “what’s next” timeline across the bottom. Clean and succinct.

Reversing that text out of yellow and orange boxes might not have been a great choice, however. I hope the Tribune‘s presses could handle that kind of registration challenge.

JOURNAL & COURIER

Lafayette, Ind.

Circulation: 25,531

The tiny Journal & Courier also went with an approach that sums up the entire story. Three small vignettes show the scene in Washington D.C. and a larger picture tells the story of a local person who expects to be affected by the ruling.

The page was designed by David Leonard, I’m told.

What makes this work well: a) Structure. b) Some white space. And c) A great headline.

Anyone seeing a pattern here?

TENNESSEAN

Nashville, Tenn.

Circulation: 118,589

First, what I don’t like here: The headline seems a little weak. Obvious, even.

Now, what I do like: Everything else. Especially the photo — by staffer George Walker IV — of a local advocacy rally.

While I don’t like the headline, I do like the three bullet point decks. The little SCOTUS head-shot graphic across the bottom is nicely done, as well.

The page was designed by Nancy Broden of the Gannett Design Studio there in Nashville, I’m told.

ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER

Santa Ana, Calif.

Circulation: 280,812

The folks at the Orange County Register knew they didn’t really have lead art today.

Their solution? A “type attack” approach. Which worked beautifully, thanks to a) A wonderful headline and great subheads to break it all up, b) Plenty of white space, and c) A rail of supplementary material down the left side for contrast.

Daniel Hunt of the OCR tells us:

This was the handiwork of senior designer Andrea Voight, who also did our bin Laden cover a little over a year ago. The headline was written by our copy desk chief, Wendy Fawthrop. The pieces were packaged by our news desk chief, Gene Harbrecht, with help from wire editors Mathis Chazanov and Paul Davenport.

TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH

Tyler, Texas

Circulation: 26,155

Here’s a very similar approach by a much smaller newspaper, half-a-continent away.

I asked Vanessa Pearson if she could tell me who designed that page. She replies:

It was me! I actually saw [an] Arizona Republic page on your blog when I was scrambling for a concept. So I borrowed. I worried it was so text heavy but our reporters got all over it to localize it to the tune of 150 inches almost. I thought it came out well.

I thought so, too, Vanessa.

CLARION-LEDGER

Jackson, Miss.

Circulation: 57,710

The folks in Jackson, Miss., also went with a text-heavy approach today. They, too, went with a horizontal crop of the SCOTUS building across the top of the page.

The difference between this page and the previous two: Color reverse bars and tint boxes to break up the type. It worked nicely — mostly because the designer didn’t let the page get too cluttered.

OMAHA WORLD-HERALD

Omaha, Neb.

Circulation: 135,223

While Omaha’s page looks nice and clean, there are, in fact, a number of moving pieces here.

Most obvious, I suppose, is the Supreme Court building photo. The headline here is particularly nice: It looks forward and also gives you a sense of the political realities. In fact, this might very well be the best headline of the day.

You’re seeing two stories, a long, vertical summary down the right side and a graphic showing how the justices voted on three factors in this case. In fact, that graphic is my only complaint here: With so many rules and reverse bars, I wonder if it might have been done with a slightly lighter touch. All that black ink draws my eye down there to that graphic a little too quickly.

That’s a relatively minor quibble, however. The page was designed by Tammy Yttri, I’m told.

ASBURY PARK PRESS

Neptune, N.J.

Circulation: 98,032

What I like about this page…

1) The headline, which uses a “cheap” designer’s trick to add to the “oomph.” However, the trick works very well here. So don’t let that sound like a complaint. More importantly, I like how the headline puts the focus on the reader.

2) The box down the right side that sums up the effects on the ruling on various aspects of daily life.

I’m told the page was designed by Gary Stelzer.

Now, compare that to the APP‘s sister paper in Parsippany. What we gain is a bigger, bolder headline and a larger photo.

What we lose, however, is the rail down the right side. Instead, that is converted into a brightly-colored tint box.

Which do you like better? Normally, I’ll go for the bigger art every time. In this case, though, I prefer the Asbury Park version.

Compare both of those, however to a competing paper in that region, the Herald News of Passaic, N.J.:

The Herald-News also went with a protest photo and a summary of “what it means to you.” But notice how this page just isn’t organized nearly as well. The length of the breakout box and the visual clutter caused by the items being to close to each other make the structure of the whole thing break down.

 

The lesson here: Keep your page clean. And a little white space can go a long, long way.

PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS

Philadelphia, Pa.

Circulation: 63,958

We’ll close with what I think might have been theho best tabloid page of the day. I’m not so crazy about the lead art, which I expect might have been stock art. Rather, it’s the headline that makes this page sing.

Now, that’s how you get folks to read about the decision and how it might impact them.

All of these front pages are from the Newseum. Of course.

  • Find Poynter’s roundup of today’s front pages here.
  • Find the Huffington Post‘s roundup of today’s front pages here.
  • Find the Newseum‘s own Top 10 front pages — and boy, do I differ from them — here.

A look inside Harrisburg’s Jerry Sandusky verdict edition from Saturday

I had a few technical issues with my blog Friday night and most of the day Saturday. In addition, I also had a client in town for infographic and design tutoring.

As a result, I didn’t get any Jerry Sandusky pages posted at all Saturday.

Instead of looking at pages that Poynter’s Julie Moos already posted, let’s take a closer look at one paper — the one that earned a Pulitzer this year for its coverage of the entire child sex abuse scandal at Penn State University: The Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pa.

My good friend, designer Megan Lavy-Heaton was kind enough to send us pages. Click on any of these for a closer look.

She designed page one herself:

The front-page picture of Sandusky being led to a police car for transport to jail is by the Patriot-NewsJoe Hermitt.

Megs tells us:

We hit send on the last page at 2:27 a.m., though I had to resend because I forgot to change the index! I had the main story in my hand for maybe five minutes before proofing, and another five minutes after that I sent the page.

I had two working pages going all night, one with a verdict and one without. But our guts were telling us there would be a verdict. When the state attorney general showed up in Bellefonte, we quietly began to abandon the non-verdict page.

Bellefonte, of course, is where the trial was held. It’s 12 miles northeast of State College — where Penn State is located — and maybe 60 or 70 miles northwest of Harrisburg.

Megs also designed pages four and five:

 

She writes:

We added four open pages to the paper at 10:30 p.m., right after the verdict was announced. Thankfully, we had a few things ready, such as the chart [of charges and verdicts, down the left side of page four]. I did the majority of the verdict chart on Thursday, though I was tweaking it right to the very end.

My favorite part of the night was when we were plotting out the inside pages and had CNN on in the background. Anderson Cooper in a very grave voice goes, “So, where does Sandusky go from here?”

Over the partition, the cops reporter yells, “To jail, you dumbass!

Pages six and seven were designed by Joe McClure.

 

Page six features a large photo of Pennsylvania’s attorney general — by staffer Chris Knight — quotes and a column about the larger issue of sex abuse. Page seven looks forward: New charges are possible, meaning a) A new trial might be held to address those charges. And b) Any plans to appeal might be affected.

The center spread — pages eight and nine, designed by Jon Gass — recap the entire story of Sandusky and the accusations against him.

One of the highlights for me is this tiny little quote, embedded in the left side rail.

That sums up the entire story pretty well, I think.

Meg writes:

We couldn’t have done it without the amazing Bellefonte bureau. Here they are after everything was over with in the wee hours of Saturday, having a drink they deserved:

I went home, sat in my chair, and thought, “Oh, thank God.” The weekend felt eerily empty without being on full gears.

On Monday, she told me:

I’m still tired, to be honest. I didn’t sleep well at all once the jury got the verdict. I did manage to get about six and a half hours of sleep Saturday morning before bolting up in bed.

Which led to this conversation via Twitter:

Meg tells us:

The laugh was much-needed.

Average daily circulation of the Patriot-News is 70,446.

Previous posts on this topic here in the blog:

How Pulitzer-winning newspapers played their prizes on page one

UPDATE – 2:10 p.m.

Links to winning entries added.

Granted, it’s a big deal when a news organization wins a Pulitzer Prize. It shows the commitment your newspaper has made to excellence — especially important when nearly everyone is cutting back on reporters, copy editors, photographers and designers.

So you really can’t blame a paper for pushing its winnings on page one. After all: This is a Pulitzer.

Here’s how some of yesterday’s winners — the print ones, at least — displayed their prizes on page one today…

PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

Philadelphia, Pa.

Circulation: 331,134

The most ostentatious A1 Pulitzer display today went to a paper that arguably needed a Pulitzer the most: The beleaguered Philadelphia Inquirer, which has lately seen massive layoffs, a change of owners and the rehire of a top editor who had been asked to accept a demotion.

The Inquirer won this year’s Public Service Pulitzer. The A1 celebration shot is terrific and the headline is wonderful.

I hope the Inky won’t carry that medal art across its nameplate all year, however. I’ve seen papers do that and I think it’s rather sad.

Note the little front pages — displaying the winning stories — across the bottom of the package.

TUSCALOOSA NEWS

Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Circulation: 27,274

In Tuscaloosa, the News won for breaking news reporting following last year’s devastating tornadoes.

It’s a relatively modest photo, highlighting what appears to be an empty chair.

DENVER POST

Denver, Colo.

Circulation: 353,115

In Denver, Craig Walker won for feature photography for his amazing story about the troubles a former Marine has had reintegrating into society.

Amazingly, this is Craig’s second Pulitzer in three years.

PATRIOT-NEWS

Harrisburg, Pa.

Circulation: 66,778

My friends in Harrisburg were delighted yesterday when the Patriot-News won for local reporting on the strength of 24-year-old Sara Ganim‘s work on the Penn State sex abuse scandal.

As Patriot-News staffers nervously watched the clock close in on 3 p.m. yesterday, David Farré — who was in his very first day as director of content for the paper’s web site — tweeted this picture of editor David Newhouse (left), Sara and executive editor Cate Barron.

He sent out a second shot after the announcement was made.

Note Sara’s bright pink socks. You gotta love that.

The work itself was wonderful, of course. I wrote about it several times here in the blog.

As for today’s front page: I love the shot of Sara at work. The papers running down the left side of the package didn’t work out so well: They created a series of awkward shapes.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE

Chicago, Ill.

Circulation: 425,370

In Chicago, columnist Mary Schmich won for commentary. Lead art today was a candid shot of Mary after the announcement.

I worked with Mary back in the mid-1990s. She was — and still is, I expect — one of the nicest people in the building. So I was thrilled to see her honored yesterday.

Mary Schmich trivia fact No. 1: Mary spent 25 years writing the Brenda Starr comic strip.

Mary Schmich trivia fact No. 2: Mary once wrote a column in which she dished out advice to graduates. Being the early days of the internet, someone picked up the column and attributed it to Kurt Vonnegut, speaking at commencement at MIT. To this day, there are folks who swear that’s who wrote what came to be known as Everybody’s Free (to Wear Sunscreen). Even after record-and-movie producer Baz Luhrman turned it into a song:

Yeah. Mary wrote that. Seriously.

POLITICO

Arlington, Va.

Circulation: 50,000

The editorial cartoonist for PoliticoMatt Wuerker — won a Pulitzer yesterday.

The lesson there, as Rob Tornoe draws for Poynter today: Cartoons are popular online.

SEATTLE TIMES

Seattle, Wash.

Circulation: 242,814

The humility award today goes to the Seattle Times, which a) stripped the story down the left side of page one — as opposed to making their win a centerpiece — and b) shared its headline with the alt-weekly in town that also won a Pulitzer.

The Times‘ Pulitzer was for investigative reporting. The Stranger won for feature writing.

BOSTON GLOBE

Boston, Mass.

Circulation: 205,939

The Boston Globe‘s movie writer, Wesley Morris, won a Pulitzer for criticism. The Globe played the story at the bottom of today’s front page.

NEW YORK TIMES

New York, N.Y.

Circulation: 1,150,589

And the New York Times — for which winning “only” two Pulitzers might be considered an off-year — played the story at the extreme bottom left corner of page one.

And even then, it’s just a promo to a story inside.

The Times‘ story about its awards is behind its paywall, of course. So no link.

There were other Pulitzer winners, of course. I didn’t think to screencap the Huffington Post yesterday after the announcement it had won a Pulitzer for national reporting. But I did see this fake splash page that was tweeted by my pal Yuri Victor.

I know a lot of people who, in fact, would have agreed with that sentiment.

And then there was Massoud Hossaini of Agence France-Presse, who won for breaking news photography with this stunning photo of the immediate aftermath of a terrorist bomb attack in Kabul, Afghanistan:

That picture ran the next day on page one of both the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times.

 

Find the complete list of 2012 Pulitzer winners here.

All these front page images are from the Newseum. Of course.

A look at today’s front-page Super Tuesday graphics

Lately, I’ve done a lot of writing about election charts. Especially regarding what you might and might not want to try to show, graphically, during the primaries.

I’m finding a lot of papers out there building huge map displays when, quite frankly, the story at this point of the election cycle isn’t about states or electoral votes. The story is a simple horserace to win enough delegates to wrap up a nomination. Big blue-and-red U.S. maps and electoral vote calculators won’t come into play until this fall.

Yet, there they are. Big maps. Many of them don’t really say much, other than to serve as oversized locator maps.

This is why I contributed a big article to the Poytner Institute back in January and then, again yesterday, I took part in a live chat, also for Poynter. Trying to help papers realize they should discard any preconceived notions about giant maps and instead focus on telling the stories they really need to tell.

How successful was I, for this Super Tuesday? Not very, I think. Judge for yourself…

———————————————–

STATE-BY-STATE BREAKDOWNS

This was a fine way to use map elements today, I think: Essentially as icons with chart material on tabular primary results.

WASHINGTON POST

Washington, D.C.

Circulation: 507,465

That’s what you see here. A very simple tab chart containing state-by-state results for eight of the ten states casting votes Tuesday.

Where were the other two states? The returns weren’t in yet, so the editors simply left them off and plugged them in a footnote.

I like very much that the actual number of delegates at stake are superimposed atop each icon.

At least two other papers today took a very similar approach. Click either of these for a larger view.

 

Note the identical big headlines for each, as well. Heh.

On the left is the Morning Call of Allentown, Pa., circulation 93,175. On the right is the Arizona Daily Star of Tucson, circulation 89,874.

DALLAS MORNING NEWS

Dallas, Texas

Circulation: 409,642

Dallas took a similar approach, except instead of stretching its graphic out horizontally, it stacked its units into a square shape.

Here’s a closer look at just the Dallas graphic.

I like the little one-sentence snippets that round up what happened in each state. Brilliantly done. I’m wishing Dallas had shown us the number of delegates at stake in each state.

Note that instead of coloring all its states Republican red, Dallas color-coded its states to show which candidate won each. Lots of papers did that today, with varying degrees of success.

BELLEVILLE NEWS-DEMOCRAT

Belleville, Ill.

Circulation: 47,129

Belleville stacked its state-by-state roundup vertically, using not only the state outlines but also full results for each.

Instead of color-coding its state icons, Belleville put the mug shot of the winning candidate beside each. But did you really want four identical mug shots of Mitt Romney on page one? I suspect not.

Also note that results for two states weren’t in at presstime. The designer here planned for Alaska, but not for Ohio. Belleville was lucky, in fact — many papers went to bed before Idaho was called as well.

In addition, you can see one of my pet peeves here: Note how the states seem to be rotated. Clearly, these states were pulled from a conic-projected U.S. map. When you do that, states from the middle part of the country (see Oklahoma) are depicted as you’d expect, while East Coast states tilt way to the left (see Virginia, Vermont, Massachusetts) and West Coast states appear tilted to the right (see Idaho).

For the correct way to use all these state icons, see the four papers above: Dallas, Tucson, Allentown and D.C.

——————————————

BAZILLIONS OF BAR CHARTS

I said during the Poynter chat Tuesday that bar charts might, in fact, be the very best way to present Super Tuesday results.

What I saw today suggested I may have been correct.

NORTHWEST HERALD

Crystal Lake, Ill.

Circulation: 32,000

The folks in Crystal Lake — in the suburbs of Chicago — built a similar graphic but a) wisely discarded the mug shots and b) used little bar charts instead of tabular results and map icons.

The results, I think are simple and clean and easy to read. This is what a good election graphic should look like. On Super Tuesday, at least.

Note the separate chart below the mainbar showing the cumulative totals of delegates each candidate had won by the end of the night and how that stacks up against the total number required to clinch the nomination (the big black bar at top).

Nicely done.

REVIEW-JOURNAL

Las Vegas, Nev.

Circulation: 213,078

Las Vegas attempted to do a similar thing. Instead of using quick-reading bar charts, however, somebody got fancy and decided to use a dot for each delegate.

The results are nice to look at. But I don’t find them easy to navigate. Not at all.

Part of the problem is that it’s all color-coded. Unless you pause to memorize which candidate is what color, you have to keep going back up to the top of the graphic to remind yourself: Ah, yes, Rick Santorum is green.

It’s an interesting attempt, though. I’m rather glad they tried it. If for no other reason than to help me prove how bar charts are one of the quickest and easiest ways to impart comparative data.

BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

Bakersfield, Calif.

Circulation: 43,228

Bakersfield converted nearly its entire tab front to a cumulative bar chart showing delegate totals for the four candidates.

I have a few problems with it, however. I’ll bet you can spot what’s concerning me. Hint: Compare the height of the big “40” bar with the “85” bar.

Yes, Ron Paul‘s 40 votes should chart just a smidgen less than half of Newt Gingrich‘s 85 votes. Instead, though, Paul’s bar is about a third of Gingrich’s.

So, right away, we know we have some kind of charting error. Looks to me like Gingrich’s 85 should be about half the height of Santorum’s 156. But in fact, that bar is maybe 40 percent of Santorum’s bar.

And don’t ask me to explain the yellow bits. Those look like bars inside the other bars, but clearly they’re not. If they were, then Romney’s 183 yellow bar should be taller than Santorum’s 156 white bar.

I could go on and pick apart this page further, but why bother? If it’s wrong, it’s wrong. You simply should not lead page one with a chart if you can’t get the chart drawn correctly.

VIRGINIAN-PILOT

Norfolk, Va.

Circulation: 145,785

Sadly enough, I find similar fault with the front page built by my former colleagues at the Virginian-Pilot.

It was very slick the way the designer here slipped in a nice, dramatically-horizontal bar chart below the candidate cutouts.

Click on this for a larger view of just the chart.

Now, the way I’m reading that chart: The light blue bars are the number of delegates the four candidates had going into Tuesday. The dark blue portions are what the candidates picked up on Super Tuesday itself (as of presstime, at least).

But the red bar shows the number of delegates a candidate need to clinch the nomination: 1,144.

At press time last night in Norfolk, Romney had 351 delegates. That’s less than a third of what he needs to become the nominee. Yet, his bar appears to be nearly half of the red bar.

That can’t be right. And, rest assured, it’s not.

We just saw this chart a moment ago, in the Northwest Herald, remember? Here is a closeup of just the delegate totals.

Note Romney’s totals appear to be roughly a third of what he’d need to clinch.

And here’s the Pilot chart again.

About half. Apparently.

Now, perhaps — and that’s a big perhaps, because I’ve not emailed over there to ask — but perhaps that little checkered flag at the end is meant to suggest the red bar goes on a bit further. If that’s the case, then shame on somebody.

Never fudge on the length of a bar in a bar chart. Never.

—————————-

MILLIONS OF MAPS

A number of papers did indeed use maps today. Most used them relatively well, if perhaps a bit large for the paltry amount of geographical data we had to show today.

OMAHA WORLD-HERALD

Omaha, Neb.

Circulation: 135,282

This graphic on the front of the Omaha paper was fairly typical of many papers today. A color-coded map shows which candidate has won what state since primary season began in January.

The problem I have with that is that the primary isn’t about “winning states.” It’s about earning delegates. Thankfully, the folks in Omaha…

…ran a cumulative total beneath the map, color-coded the same way.

The result was quite nice.

My beef here isn’t with the graphic. It’s with the page. As much as I love white space, that pages looks positively serene — in a lazy Sunday morning features section sort of way. You’d never know this is a page-one Super Tuesday election package, built on tight deadline.

Beautiful design. But lacking a bit in overall effect. Minus a few points, I’m afraid, for imparting no urgency at all.

Let’s pause a moment to run through a few other — very similar — front-page maps from around the country.

The Arizona Republic in Phoenix a map very similar to Omaha’s, except instead of labeling each state, the Republic put in the number of delegates at stake.

My complaint here is a minor one. As we talked about in the Poynter chat yesterday, Republicans are now and forever associated with the color red. So should be be using blue — the “Democrat” color — to show even one of the four GOP candidates?

I’d feel a lot better if we could have found another color other than blue to use for Santorum.

Notice the Boston Globe did so, and it helped somewhat.

The problem I have with the Globe‘s graphic is that there’s so much material there. We’re seeing states won earlier, states won today, percentage totals for each state. Plus the big cumulative total is crammed in on the left, beside Alaska.

This was clearly an ambitious undertaking. They’d have gotten away with it, perhaps, if they could have gotten another few square inches of real estate to play with.

No offense intended to the fine folks at Honolulu’s Star Advertiser, but I particularly disliked this map.

Each state is color-coded. And, yes, Gingrich is blue this time. So minus points for that.

But here, each state in play Tuesday is lifted out in isometric fashion to form a little bar chart. You’re supposed to get a sense — from the height of each state — of how many delegates the candidate won in that state.

The problem with this? Yes, Newt Gingrich “won” in Georgia yesterday. But he didn’t necessarily win all 76 of Georgia’s delegates. Not many of yesterday’s races were “winner-take-all.”

In fact, I see Gingrich earned only 46 of Georgia’s 76 delegates with his win last night. Mitt Romney captured 13 delegates and Rick Santorum pulled in two. An additional 15 delegates are, most likely, uncommitted “Super delegates.”

You get the idea, though. There is no data-driven reason whatsoever to show those states like that and to color the state-stacks to correspond with the first-place candidate. No reason whatsoever. It’s misleading.

Now, in Honolulu’s defense, it did run the cumulative total below the map. But still.

Speaking of color, look at this map — from my friends at the Casper, Wyo., Star Tribune — and tell me what jumps out at you.

The dark red jumps out. But the dark black/brown color jumps out even more.

So what does the dark color show?

Um… no data yet. Primaries haven’t been held there yet.

Swap out the black and the light cream color used for Romney, here, and you might have a winner. While you’re at it, color-coordinate the bars across the bottom with the map.

Now, contrast that with the colors you see in this map.

Isn’t that nice? Easier on the eyes. And the “no primary held yet” states sit in the background, nice and quietly like they should.

That was the Ventura County Star of Ventura, Calif.

Here’s how all those map-driven pieces were used today on their respective front pages:

 

  • Left: Arizona Republic, Phoenix, Ariz. Circulation: 292,838
  • Right: Boston Globe, Boston, Mass. Circulation: 205,939

   

  • Left: Star Advertiser, Honolulu, Hawaii. Circulation: 124,000
  • Center: Star Tribune, Casper, Wyo. Circulation: 24,516
  • Right: Ventura County Star, Ventura, Calif. Circulation: 61,621

ASBURY PARK PRESS

Neptune, N.J.

Circulation: 104,582

The folks in Asbury Park built a huge map for page one. It’s certainly not what I would have recommended anyone do on Super Tuesday. But they came close — damned close — to doing a fine job.

Notice that all three candidates are shown here using various shades of red. It’s not necessary to show Ron Paul on the map at all, since he’s not won a state and wasn’t expected to win one Tuesday.

The problem I have: The designer tried to use two shades of red for each candidate, showing previous primaries and last night’s primary. That meant six separate shades of pinks. Or, to be more precise, four shades of pink plus two shades containing white crosshatches to show Gingrich’s two states.

All of which, as you can see, was difficult to pull off.

What I like about this map: It uses light blue to push the states not in play Tuesday into the background. Do you see the slightly deeper shades of blue, though? Those states are up next.

This whole thing was used huge today on page one in Asbury Park and perhaps other papers designed by the Gannett Design Studio there.

It was interesting. but it doesn’t tell us what we really want to know: Are we any closer to nominating a candidate to face President Barack Obama in the fall? How much more of primary-season mudslinging must we endure?

Someone clearly spent some time on this map. But I think a simple state-by-state breakdown plus a cumulative delegate total would have been way better.

DES MOINES REGISTER

Des Moines, Iowa

Circulation: 105,151

Now, as interesting as that was, check out what was produced by Asbury Park’s sister paper in Des Moines.

It’s a huge, huge map. That shows us… shows us what?

Umm… Well, it shows us what states held primaries on Super Tuesday. And it shows us who won those states. The color-coded mug shots, in fact, are kind of neat. Kudos to someone for avoiding the Democratic blue.

And while the cumulative delegate totals are listed beneath the mug shots, that’s really all the data we get from this giant graphic. No state-by-state results. No delegate totals by state. Not even the names of the states.

Pretty odd for a four-column graphic, I’d say. Not a very efficient use of space.

But, man. It sure is pretty. The same graphic was used by another paper produced there in Gannett’s Des Moines studio, the 9,718-circulation Press-Citizen of Iowa City.

 

Note how we can tell the Iowa City paper has an earlier deadline: Ohio is not yet colored in for Mitt Romney.

Des Moines Design Studio director Ted Power posted these two pages and several more on Pinterest today, complete with descriptions and design credits. You know, this is the first time I’ve seen Pinterest used this way. It’s pretty cool to look at now, but Ted keeps pinning to his collection, this will become a jumble of pages on various topics. I wonder if a regular blog or even a Facebook gallery might be a better forum for showing off news pages.

Kudos to Ted for jumping on Pinterest early, however. I’ve not messed around with it yet. Do I need an invite or something?

———————————-

BEST PAGE OF THE DAY

PATRIOT-NEWS

Harrisburg, Pa.

Circulation: 66,778

My favorite front page of the day was this one by the Harrisburg, Pa., Patriot-News, in which the editors downplayed bar charts and maps and went with an alternative story form approach.

There’s so much goodness here.

  • A side-by-side comparison of the two leading candidates and how Tuesday played into their overall stories.
  • A quick, quick look at who won which state Tuesday…

  • …but also pulling out three key states with three key results. Note the pie charts that run around the edges of the circles.
  • And then similar looks at what I’ll impolitely call the “fringe candidates” — the ones who are not frontrunners.

Even the headline is brilliant. Hasn’t primary season just dragged on this year? Seems like it’s been a year since the Iowa Caucus.

And this isn’t the first time the Harrisburg paper has impressed me with its election night coverage. The Patriot-News took a prebuilt, modular approach to the Congressional elections in 2010. Find samples and read more about it at the top of this blog post.

—————————

FUN ODDITY NO. 1

Today must have been gesticulation day in Missouri.

Check out the side-by-side photos of Romney and Santorum in both the Kansas City and St. Joseph papers.

 

That’s the same picture of Romney on each, shot by Stephan Savoia of the Associated Press. The shots of Santorum are different ones but were both shot by Eric Gay, also of the AP.

  • Left: Kansas City Star, Kansas City, Mo. Circulation: 199,222
  • Right: St Joseph News-Press, St. Joseph, Mo. Circulation: 25,681

—————————

FUN ODDITY NO. 2

BOSTON HERALD

Boston, Mass.

Circulation: 113,798

Given the dogfight we saw last night in Ohio, this was, without question, the headline of the day.

Yes, it’s a dumb joke. But I like it.

All of these front pages are from the Newseum. Of course.

A look at today’s Joe Paterno pages

Former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno held on overnight Saturday but then passed away Sunday morning.

Despite all the bad stuff we’ve reported over the past few weeks, Paterno was at Penn State many, many years — he was named head coach in 1966. He is the winningest coach in NCAA football history. And he’s a beloved figure in Pennsylvania. Which, of course, is why the child rape scandal there shocked everyone so badly.

Here’s a look at some of the tribute pages published today.

PATRIOT-NEWS

Harrisburg, Pa.

Circulation: 66,778

The Patriot-News has pretty much owned the story of the developing scandal this fall at Penn State and of the aftermath. So it stands to reason the paper would present one of the more outstanding A sections today.

My good friend Megan Lavey-Heaton was kind enough to send us all of the Patriot-News‘ Paterno pages today.

The dynamite poster wrap features a photo by staffer Joe Hermitt, turned black-and-white for effect.

Credit design editor Chris Boehke.

Oh, and click on any of these Harrisburg pages for a much larger look.

Page two is a picture page. Joe Hermitt’s photo of Paterno leading his team onto the field for a 2010 game is the lead picture.

That was designed by both Chris and Megan.

Megs designed page three — which, when you remove the wrap, is really page one.

That “Season’s end” headline was one of the best of the day. Just perfect. The picture of Sunday’s oncampus candlelight vigil is yet another by Joe Hermitt.

A lengthy column by John Luciew — looking at the now-suddenly-very-complicated legacy of Paterno at Penn State — fills page five.

The picture of Paterno stalking the practice field was shot by, yes, Joe Hermitt. At Paterno’s very last practice, in fact, on Nov. 9.

The page was designed by Jon Gass.

Pages six and seven make up the center spread of the A section. The lead picture of Paterno on the shoulders of his team is from right after his 314th victory in 2001. That’s when Paterno passed Alabama’s Bear Bryant in career coaching victories.

Note the file picture of Paterno and Bryant on the left.

Meg designed this spread.

And then page eight covered a few of the more recent developments, including angry reaction from Penn State fans over JoePa’s firing in November and a story addressing how Paterno’s death will affect the child molestation trial.

Jon Gass designed that page.

The Patriot-News plans to insert tomorrow a 32-page special section commemorating the life of Joe Paterno.

Find all the Patriot-News‘ Paterno coverage here.

CITIZENS’ VOICE

Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

Circulation: 43,305

Up in Wilkes-Barre, the Citizens’ Voice also went with a wonderful shot of Paterno and understated typography on page one today.

The picture is by Michael R. Sisak, who was kind enough to send us all of his paper’s inside Paterno pages today.

Click any of these for a much larger view.

Pages two and three cover the news of the day.

 

Page four (left) addressed reaction of the Penn State fans. The lead picture there is by staffer Kristen Mullen.

 

Page five (right) contains a column by staffer Donnie Collins.

Page six (left) was about Paterno’s health over the past few weeks and especially over the last few hours. The lead art there is from the previous weekend’s exclusive interview in the Washington Post.

 

Page eight (right) is more reaction from the community.

Page ten (left) looks at memories of Paterno by local folks. Page 11 addresses the criminal cases against Paterno’s former assistant.

 

The editorial page — page 14 — features a nice cartoon by John Cole of the Scranton Times-Tribune.

We’ll skip ahead to the sports section, which begins on page 27. Here’s the lead story and a 2007 picture by Pat Little of the Associated Press.

Pages 28 and 30 look at reaction from the world of sports. Particularly noteworthy are the personal essays by two of Paterno’s players on page 28 (bottom left).

 

Page 29 was a picture page.

Unfortunately, the photos are uncredited.

Page 31 (left) is topped by a timeline of Paterno’s career from MCT graphics.

 

And here is today’s back page with a look at Paterno’s old-school coaching cleats.

Unfortunately, that picture, too, is uncredited.

Find all of the Citizens’ Voice Paterno coverage here.

Okay, that was in-depth looks at two of today’s papers. Now, let’s take a spin through the best front pages of the day from around the area — for the most part, as seen at the Newseum

YORK DAILY RECORD

York, Pa.

Circulation: 55,128

Some kind of technical glitch kept the York paper out of the Newseum today, says assistant managing editor Brad Jennings. So he sent along today’s front featuring a gorgeous picture and very restrained use of typography.

Brad tells us:

The photo was by Jason Plotkin from the Outback Bowl in January 2011. It’s a tight crop on an otherwise wide horizontal shot.

Samantha Dellinger did the design under the direction of visual editor Eileen Joyce.

Brilliantly done.

Find all of the York Daily Record‘s Paterno coverage here.

WILLIAMSPORT SUN-GAZETTE

Williamsport, Pa.

Circulation: 22,839

Williamsport blacked out today’s front in memory of JoePa. The result is one of the better-looking pages of the day.

The picture is file art from the Associated Press.

READING EAGLE

Reading, Pa.

Circulation: 49,375

Reading used file art — of Paterno in 2008 by the AP’s Carolyn Kaster — to create a “walking away” effect on its front today.

Note how the paper took down the size of its nameplate and moved it to the left.

PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

Philadelphia, Pa.

Circulation: 331,134

While Reading showed JoePa walking away from us, the Inquirer shows him running toward us in 2004. This is yet another file photo by the Associated Press’ Carolyn Kaster.

Interesting how the Inky worked in the Nittany Lion reference into its headline. Hold that thought; we’ll get back to it in a moment.

PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS

Philadelphia, Pa.

Circulation: 110,000

The Daily News went retro with a 40-year-old file picture of Paterno from just before the 1971 Cotton Bowl.

This gave the page a decidedly different look that most of the others.

TIMES-TRIBUNE

Scranton, Pa.

Circulation: 48,216

Scranton built its poster front around a file AP shot of Paterno being carried off the field.

I wonder if the page would have looked a little cleaner if the box at the bottom hadn’t been faded along the edges.

MORNING CALL

Allentown, Pa.

Circulation: 93,175

Another great paper with another fine, understated front page.

The two quibbles I have here…

1) That quote up top seems awfully long. I wonder if a shorter one might have worked a little better.

2) Most of Paterno’s face was pushed below the fold. Is this a day when Allentown might have dumped its skyboxes?

THE INTELLIGENCER

Doylestown, Pa.

Circulation: 31,810

BUCKS COUNTY COURIER TIMES

Levittown, Pa.

Circulation: 42,665

BURLINGTON COUNTY TIMES

Willingboro, N.J.

Circulation: 25,223

The Calkins Media papers chose live pictures taken of the candelight vigil held on campus Sunday night. Lead art afront Doylestown today is this one by Gene J. Puskar of the Associated Press.

I think that choice was better than the AP picture — by Kristen Mullen of the Citizens’ Voice — that included the statue of Paterno outside the football stadium.

Here is the Willingboro, N.J. version of that same front.

The Levittown and Willingboro papers couldn’t really have used the picture of the candles spelling out “Joe,” simply because their nameplate would block too much of the picture.

   

I like working pictures into a paper’s nameplate. But I don’t like formatting a paper so that the nameplate overlaps into the lead photo every day. Some days, that just doesn’t work.

Despite that, all three papers came out looking pretty well today.

STAR LEDGER

Newark, N.J.

Circulation: 210,586

The Newark paper also went with candelight vigil art by Patrick Smith of Getty Images.

The visual impact of the Paterno story is overshadowed greatly by what is perhaps an even bigger story today for the Star Ledger: The Giants are in the Super Bowl.

TIMES LEADER

Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

Circulation: 40,334

I like the way the Wilkes-Barre paper reached out for a different kind of headline today. I’m not quite sure it worked, however. This seems a tad awkward.

The file picture is by staffer Fred Adams.

ERIE TIMES-NEWS

Erie, Pa.

Circulation: 49,351

The Paterno story made for a fairly straightforward centerpiece in today’s Erie paper, promoing to three stories inside.

The picture was uncredited.

STANDARD-SPEAKER

Hazleton, Pa.

Circulation: 20,008

And a 2008 picture of Paterno full of fire on the sideline was lead art today in Hazleton.

The picture is by Christopher Gardner of the Philadelphia Inquirer.

ALTOONA MIRROR

Altoona, Pa.

Circulation: 27,216

Now, I understand the amount of effort that went into this page. But I think it’s a good example of how too much work — in this case, too many elements and too much Photoshop pizzazz — can actually detract from a story like this.

I mean, really. You’ve seen the larger papers above, that went with straight art and clean typography. Those pages are much more effective than this one, with all the fades and the superimpositions.

No offense to the kind folks in Altoona. But you worked too hard on this one. A little restraint will go a long way.

METRO

Philadelphia, Pa.

And while this may not be the best headline of the day, it is, by far, the most clever.

Very cute.

The picture is from Getty Images.

The Patriot-News, York Daily Record and Citizens’ Voice pages are from those papers. The rest are from the Newseum. Of course.

Previous posts here in the blog on Joe Paterno and the scandal at Penn State:

Tuesday, Nov. 8: Behind Harrisburg’s full-page editorial

Thursday, Nov. 10: Today’s Top 11 Joe Paterno front pages

Thursday, Nov. 10: Two more Paterno pages from Pennsylvania

Friday, Nov. 11: Thoughts on today’s New York Post cover

Saturday, Nov. 12: An interesting way to preview today’s Penn State/Nebraska game

Sunday, Nov. 13: Coverage of the first game without JoePa

Sunday, Jan. 15: How the Washington Post presented its exclusive interview with Paterno

Sunday, Jan. 22: A quick look at a few Joe Paterno pages

A nice compliment from Esquire magazine

By now, you’ve probably heard about the new issue of Esquire magazine. Former president Bill Clinton takes on the topic of achieving consensus and why that’s seemingly become a lost art.

It’s a great interview, in fact. Read it here.

There’s a cute little sidebar, however, called “78 other things we can all agree on.” I can’t find that online. But someone today sent me this tiny excerpt.

Wow.

Congratulations to David Newhouse, Cate Barron and their crew at the Patriot-News. I’m looking forward to seeing what they publish tomorrow morning.

A quick look at a few Joe Paterno front pages

By now, you know Joe Paterno — longtime football coach at Penn State and somewhat tarnished, suddenly, by the child rape scandal that made news in November — has passed away.

If you didn’t see it, this was the home page at the CBS Sports web site for a few minutes last night, before Paterno died:

I’m not going to write much here about the debacle that happened last night. We’ve seen that same premature rush to report on the Gabrielle Giffords story last year.

We simply cannot lower our standards in reporting any news, much less news of this nature. The public already mistrusts us. This sort of thing doesn’t help.

If you want to know how the false reports got out of hand and ballooned out of control, Poynter’s Jeff Sonderman reconstructed the whole thing here. The site that started the ball rolling — OnwardState, a student news organization — is written up here by Poynter’s Steve Myers.

The managing editor of OnwardState stepped down overnight as soon as the magnitude of his error became clear. Like Ernie Smith of ShortFormBlog reports:

Onward State took full credit. They deserve full props. Meanwhile, CBS Sports passed the buck onto them, saying that they didn’t report he died and apologizing only for bad sourcing despite the fact that they didn’t even properly source the story at first, only linking to a single tweet.

Jim Romenesko reports today that the OnwardState student managing editor is getting props for manning up. Good for him.

And you might finish your morning reading with Craig Silverman‘s analysis, in which he questions the whole “get it first” mentality.

You’ll be hearing much, much more about this over the next few days.

Meanwhile, the print world was left hanging on deadline. Had Paterno died? Is he about to die? Will he still be alive when readers pick up their morning paper? How the hell do you play this?

You play it conservatively.

My friends at the Patriot-News of Harrisburg have pretty much owned this story from Day One. Here’s how Chris Boehke and Meg Lavey designed page one today:

The picture of students gathering around the JoePa statue at the football stadium last night is by staffer Joe Hermitt.

The “prayers” approach in the headline allows for quite a bit of flexibility. Better than “Paterno still hanging on” or “Paterno fights for life.” Because, again, that could have ended at any moment.

Average daily circulation for the Patriot-News is 71,834.

In Williamsport, the Sun-Gazette opted for an enormous mug shot from the Associated Press.

Average daily circulation for the Sun-Gazette is 22,839.

And the 43,305-circulation Citizens’ Voice of Wilkes-Barre raided the files for this picture by staffer Michael R. Sisak of one of Paterno’s last practices.

Note the “prayers” headline.

These same patterns hold, for the most part, on the rest of today’s front pages throughout the state.

I won’t show you any more today — I expect we’ll see plenty more front pages tomorrow, now that Paterno has, in fact, passed.

The Harrisburg front is from that paper. The other two are from the Newseum. Of course.

Previous posts here in the blog on Joe Paterno and the scandal at Penn State:

Tuesday, Nov. 8: Behind Harrisburg’s full-page editorial

Thursday, Nov. 10: Today’s Top 11 Joe Paterno front pages

Thursday, Nov. 10: Two more Paterno pages from Pennsylvania

Friday, Nov. 11: Thoughts on today’s New York Post cover

Saturday, Nov. 12: An interesting way to preview today’s Penn State/Nebraska game

Sunday, Nov. 13: Coverage of the first game without JoePa

Sunday, Jan. 15: How the Washington Post presented its exclusive interview with Paterno

 

A look at Sunday’s Penn State football front pages

Saturday marked the first Penn State University football game since 1949 that Joe Paterno wasn’t on the sidelines and the first since 1966 in which he wasn’t head coach for the Nittany Lions.

This was traumatic to players and Penn State fans. Others, of course, were quick to point out that this wasn’t nearly as traumatic as what happened to the little boys who were allegedly sexually abused over the years by a former Penn State coach — which is what led to the firing of Paterno and the university president this week. (The former coach himself has been indicted on charges of child abuse. His lawyers say he’s not guilty.)

As awkward as this huge story made Saturday’s home game with Nebraska, the game went on. And it began with one of the more moving moments I’ve seen in college football.

Penn State players walked out to midfield to hold a prayer for all the victims of child abuse. And damned if the Nebraska players didn’t go out there with them.

That picture is by Joe Hermitt of the Harrisburg Patriot-News. I’m asking you to click on it for a huge look. At least eleven newspapers around the country used a picture of that moment on page one today.

PATRIOT-NEWS

Harrisburg, Pa.

Circulation: 71,834

Here’s how the paper used that photo out front today.

The page was designed by John Gass, I’m told. Just wonderful.

As I mentioned the other day, the Patriot-News is the paper that broke the story originally and it’s been all over it ever since.

This recap of all the Patriot-News‘ front pages on this topic ran in today’s paper. It’s reconfigured in a vertical format to make it easily readable here in the blog.

The graphic was written by editor David Newhouse and assembled by designer Meg Lavey-Heaton.

Outstanding work this week by the Patriot-News.

ALTOONA MIRROR

Altoona, Pa.

Circulation: 29,034

Altoona’s huge photo of the pregame pause was by staffer Patrick Waksmunski.

The upside: It’s a great picture and a fine headline. The downside: Those skybox promos are so garish and so cluttered that it takes away from the wonderful presentation of the rest of the page.

PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

Philadelphia, Pa.

Circulation: 331,134

Philly’s page one shot is by staffer David Swanson.

Remarkably, the Inquirer devoted nearly three-quarters of page on today to its three Penn State stories.

TRIBUNE-REVIEW

Galesburg, Pa.

Circulation: 190,625*

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review didn’t show up in the Newseum this morning. It’s usually pretty similar to the Galesburg edition, however.

The photo by staffer Barry Reeger is nice enough. What’s truly great here, however, is that headline.

Downpage is a story about the accused, former Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky. It wasn’t until now that I had seen the title of his biography.

Geez. You can’t make this stuff up, folks.

LANCASTER SUNDAY NEWS

Lancaster, Pa.

Circulation: 96,102

Lancaster also built its front today around a mass shot. This picture is from the Associated Press.

WORLD-HERALD

Omaha, Neb.

Circulation: 142,283

Even in Nebraska, this pregame meeting was front-page news.

The picture here is by staffer Alyssa Schukar.

Take note of the picture up top of a man hugging the statue of Paterno. More about that in a moment…

STAR-LEDGER

Newark, N.J.

Circulation: 229,255

The Newark paper also ran the moment on page one today.

That’s the same picture used today by the Patriot-News of Harrisburg — Newark’s sister paper.

We saw a “Bigger than football” headline earlier. But this one works a little better, I think:

A day bigger than football

CHICAGO TRIBUNE

Chicago, Ill.

Circulation: 425,370

NEW YORK TIMES

New York, N.Y.

Circulation: 1,150,589

This moment was also judged worthy of above-the-fold play by the Chicago Tribune and the New York Times.

 

The NYT picture is by staffer Chang W. Lee. The Tribune shot is by Evan Habeeb of U.S. Presswire.

READING EAGLE

Reading, Pa.

Circulation: 52,747

Staffer Jeremy Drey got in close for a tighter shot of the pregame moment for the front of the Reading Eagle.

Frankly, this isn’t the choice I would have advised. What’s stunning to me about this moment was seeing all the players mixed together on the field in their red and blue jerseys. You just don’t get a sense of that in this tight shot.

I applaud the Eagle for attempting to zig while everyone else zags, thoguh.

MORNING CALL

Allentown, Pa.

Circulation: 106,021

And talk about zigging: Michael Kubel of the Morning Call shot a single Penn State player who was not part of the huge mass at midfield.

It’s a moving shot, with the player by himself and the crowd far in the distance behind him. But again, I wonder how a photo editor could pass up that big midfield meeting of the teams.

VALLEY NEWS DISPATCH

Tarentum, Pa.

Circulation: 28,135

And perhaps the most unusual photo of the pregame moment was played on page one today by the Valley News Dispatch of Tarentum, Pa.

Tremendously dramatic stuff is happening at midfield. But lead art today is of folks in the stands watching it happen.

The picture by Barry Reeger of the Tribune-Review is just fine. Perfect, perhaps. But again, I have to wonder about the choice.

Perhaps the idea here is that by this morning, most readers will have seen the midfield meeting either in other newspapers or on TV. But that’s only a guess.

Normally, I like the ol’ “zig while everyone else zags” thing and I usually encourage that kind of thinking here in the blog.

But again: How can one pass up that midfield moment?

—————————————————————–

PAGES THAT FOCUSED ON PENN STATE FANS

Having said that, a number of papers led their front pages today with pictures of completely different things. Taken during or after the game itself, in some cases.

BURLINGTON COUNTY TIMES

Willingboro, N.J.

Circulation: 27,057

This photo by Matt Rourke of the Associated Press shows blue ribbons for child abuse painted on the faces of two Penn State fans.

That boxy nameplate crowds the chin of the woman on the right, however, so I’m not particularly fond of this page.

CITIZENS’ VOICE

Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

Circulation: 45,608

The idea in Wilkes-Barre, evidently, was to show folks moving on. This picture by staffer Michael R. Sisak shows the crowd going wild during pregame player introductions.

It would be a fine page, if not for that overly busy skybox assembly.

INTELLIGENCER

Doylestown, Pa.

Circulation: 34,318

This one strikes me as very odd — the focus appears to be on security efforts by state troopers.

Yes, there was a bomb threat at one point Saturday. Officials looked into it and decided it was just a threat, so the game went on. The cutline makes no reference to the threat or to any reason that might suggest security was an issue Saturday.

The picture is by Gene J. Puskar of the Associated Press.

POCONO RECORD

Strausburg, Pa.

Circulation: 13,376

The paper in Stroudsburg focused on a fan watching in dismay as the Nittany Lions lost the game.

That doesn’t exactly strike me as the photo of the day. On the other hand, the editors masterfully tied it in to what was the story of the day with this headline:

Disappointing loss on the road to recovery

I might add that this is pretty much a single-subject front page. Every story here is about either the game or the scandal.

And before we move on, check out that McDonald’s ad at the bottom right. I’m wondering at what point editors will be empowered to say: I’m sorry, but that’s just too damned ugly for page one. If you can’t design it any better than that, it’s going inside.

TIMES-TRIBUNE

Scranton, Pa.

Circulation: 48,408

I don’t have anything kind at all to say about the design or the “reverse L” we’re seeing here on the front of the Scranton paper. So Let’s just focus on the photo choice, shall we?

The picture — which has neither a credit nor a byline — appears to show the typical shirtless, body-painted frat boy fans. A very odd choice, given the tone of the day, of the coverage we’ve seen in the other papers and even in relation to the main headline.

But hang on a second. A picture by Chloe Elmer in the Penn State student newspaper — more about that in a moment — give you a better view of this same row of kids.

That’s not “Go, Nittany Lions” or “Beat Nebraska” or even “We miss JoPa” painted on their bellies.

What is the body-paint message of the day?

Oh, wow. That is so damned cool.

Kudos to the folks in Scranton for wanting to highlight this today. It’s a shame that they couldn’t find a picture in which you could actually read the message.

OBSERVER-REPORTER

Washington, Pa.

Circulation: 29,539

Speaking of body paint…

That picture is from the AP.

DAILY LOCAL NEWS

West Chester, Pa.

Circulation: 26,772

OK, we mentioned this shot earlier. This is by Rebecca S. Gratz of the Omaha World-Herald and distributed last night by the Associated Press.

Now, realistically speaking, it’s not an unusual picture. That statue has been there for years. Folks take pictures posing by it — and with it — every gameday.

But in the context of this week’s events — and especially the on-campus riots Wednesday night — the picture seems to be a great example of the love that Penn State fans have for Paterno. Love that blinds them, perhaps, to the heartbreaking failure on Paterno’s part in the abuse scandal.

For that reason, I would have advised against using this picture in a prominent way. To play it up on page one today just seems… I don’t know. Cartoonish, perhaps.

NEWS JOURNAL

Wilmington, Del.

Circulation: 88,083

The same picture was played up on the front of today’s Wilmington, Del., paper.

I think my feelings about the statue — or rather, front-page play of this particular photo of the statue — were summed up best by this cartoon Friday by John Cole of the Scranton Times-Tribune:

See more of John’s work here.

NEW YORK POST

New York, N.Y.

Circulation: 512,067

The New York Post felt there was too much JoPa worship and not enough reflection on the abused children. As you can see from today’s front page.

And while yes, that’s pretty much why I dislike the statue shot — which the Post ran as secondary art today — I think the Post missed the bigger story here. What about that moving moment before the game, with both teams gathered at midfield? What about those kids with the body paint, honoring the abused kids?

No, the Post completely ignored all that and zeroed in only on what it needed to fuel its rant. Which might have been timely on Thursday. But is clearly not today.

If there’s one thing that sends me into fits of righteous indignation, it’s the New York Post and its fits of righteous indignation.

Shame on the Post today. And shame on me for being offended by it. When will I learn to not take that paper seriously?

————————————————–

LEAD ART FROM AFTER THE GAME

COURIER TIMES

Levittown, Pa.

Circulation: 46,765

Two papers led today with photos of kneeling Penn State players. But rather than show them kneeling during the moving pre-game prayer, these papers showed them kneeling after the game.

The best of these two front pages was by the Courier Times of Levittown, Pa., which used this picture by Alyssa Schukar of the Associated Press.

Not only is the photo big and bold and perfectly cropped, but also it shows other photographers also shooting the player. One gets the impression it was a real media circus out there yesterday.

TIMES LEADER

Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

Circulation: 33,632

The Times Leader of Wilkes-Barre also with a post-game kneeling photo. The player in the foreground detracts from the picture, however.

I can’t imagine why the editors would choose this one to lead page one. For that matter, I can’t imagine why the AP would even send that picture out on the wire.

——————————————————

PENN STATE’S STUDENT NEWSPAPER

DAILY COLLEGIAN

State College, Pa.

Distribution: About 20,000

The student paper at Penn State put out a special 11-page edition today — its first Sunday edition ever.

Filling the front page was this horizontal photo by Joseph Streb of a candle during Friday’s on-campus candelight vigil for the victims of child abuse.

The section is stuffed with stories about child abuse victims, the reaction to the weeks’ events… and, yes, coverage of Saturday’s football game. The centerpiece doubletruck contained a photo montage from Saturday.

Find the Collegian online here. Download a PDF of the special section here.

—————————————

AND, FROM ELSEWHERE…

DES MOINES REGISTER

Des Moines, Iowa

Circulation: 108,247

In Iowa Hawkeye country, the Des Moines Register took the opportunity Sunday to run a fascinating story on the mindset that causes college sports programs to cover up their scandals.

The college collage here is by master designer/illustrator Mark Marturello.

Take note that the Register isn’t just pointing fingers. The pullout box — and the two mugs — downpage represent huge scandals at both the University of Iowa and at Iowa State.

Find the story here by staffer Tim Witosky.

POST AND COURIER

Charleston, S.C.

Circulation: 89,224

And in Charleston, the Post and Courier led with a completely unrelated story. Yet, it’s stil really the same story, isn’t it?

There, a local man was charged with molesting five young boys. Previously, the man worked as a counselor at a summer camp at the storied Citadel military college.

Yes, you guessed it. There were multiple occurrences there, as well. Doesn’t look like the Citadel did much about it. Oddly enough, there was another molester on campus around that same time. That man was reported, convicted and served time in prison.

Find the story here by Glenn Smith.

The lesson here: Child molestation is a huge problem. And there’s no excuse for cases at the Citadel or Penn State or anywhere else to go unreported or uninvestigated or unprosecuted.

Let’s get these sex offenders off the streets. As well as the officials — however well-meaning they claim to be — who cover up these incidents.

These front-page images are all from the Newseum. Of course.

Previous posts on this topic here in the blog:

Tuesday, Nov. 8: Behind Harrisburg’s full-page editorial

Thursday, Nov. 10: Today’s Top 11 Joe Paterno front pages

Thursday, Nov. 10: Two more Paterno pages from Pennsylvania

Friday, Nov. 11: Thoughts on today’s New York Post cover

Saturday, Nov. 12: An interesting way to preview today’s Penn State/Nebraska game

Behind Harrisburg’s full-page editorial front page

Today’s the Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pa., responded to the heartbreaking sex abuse scandal in the Penn State University athletic department with a full-page editorial

Click for a readable view:

Editor David Newhouse tells us:

It’s a rework of the inspired 9-11 front from our sister paper, The Star-Ledger. If front page designs had credits, we would have loved to have said that.

 

Here’s how it happened: we decided to write a front page editorial calling for the resignation of Penn State President Graham Spanier and for Joe Paterno to step down after this season ends, due to the way they responded (or didn’t respond) to the Sandusky situation.

Once the editorial was written, we could see that at more than 35 inches, it would not simply sit in a strip or centerpiece position unless we wanted to jump it, which we were adamantly opposed to. At that length, I knew it would take up much of the page and immediately thought of the Ledger‘s 9-11 front which I loved. I showed it to our design editor Chris Boehke, and he reworked it to as needed match our content.

Kirk [publisher John Kirkpatrick] took some convincing — I’m sure he’d be the first to say it. But he asked what all the top editors thought and everyone was unanimous. In the end, he felt it was a gamble (in terms of community reaction, not design) but trusted his staff’s instincts and okayed it.

Interestingly, quite a few people lobbied hard to put some art on the front. In particular, we had a great shot of Spanier and Paterno talking together, all alone on the football field before a game.

Graham Spanier and Joe Paterno before the 2010 Iowa

game. Photo by Nabil K. Mark of the Centre Daily Times.

But we felt strongly that the all-type treatment was the source of the design’s power.

By the way, we expected a deluge of calls and emails this morning angry that we turned our front page over to our own opinion. Instead, nearly all the feedback has been positive, some extremely so.

Read the editorial online here.

Here are the Patriot-News front pages for Sunday and Monday. Click on either for a larger view.

 

The Newark page and those last two Harrisburg pages are from the Newseum. Of course.

Average daily circulation for the Patriot-News is 71,834.

A look at Saturday’s baseball playoff pages

It’s past time for our daily look at baseball playoff pages.

National League teams clinched trips to the league championship series last night.

_________________________________________

ST. LOUIS CARDINALS 1, PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES 0

Cardinals win series, 3-2

—

ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH

St. Louis, Mo.

Circulation: 196,232

The obligatory locker room champagne celebration shot afront the Post-Dispatch is by staffer Chris Lee.

—

BELLEVILLE NEWS-DEMOCRAT

Belleville, Ill.

Circulation: 50,045

A wonderfully witty headline and a huge amount of emotion in the MCT photo out front.

I have a tendency to not think of the Illinois papers when I’m showing St. Louis Cardinals stuff. Thanks to Jack Hitts for pointing out this page in the comments to this post.

—

PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

Philadelphia, Pa.

Circulation: 343,710

Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard apparently injured his achilles tendon in the very last play of the game last night. Therefore, he’s the story of the day on page one of all the Philly-area newspapers today.

This agonizing picture is by Inky staffer David Maialetti.

MORNING CALL

Allentown, Pa.

Circulation: 106,021

Morning Call staffer Kevin Mingora snapped a picture of Howard immediately after the injury. That’s what his paper ran out front today.

Not in the cards” is a pretty decent headline, too, I’d say.

THE MERCURY

Pottstown, Pa.

Circulation: 25,390

If you think that headline witty, how about this one?

Man, that picture of Ryan Howard is painful to look at. That was from the Associated Press.

PATRIOT-NEWS

Harrisburg, Pa.

Circulation: 71,834

The folks in Harrisburg also found a witty way to top the story and an appropriate photo to back it up.

That picture is by Matt Rourke of the Associated Press.

THE REPORTER

Lansdale, Pa.

Circulation: 9,836

And, at first glance, this centerpiece is downright baffling:

On the brink of elimination? What the hell?

Simple. The paper’s deadlines fell before the end of the game. Not wanting to ignore the game entirely, however, the editors chose a picture from the first inning and tried to write around the fact that they didn’t have a score.

Clearly, the gamble didn’t work. By the time the paper hit the streets, either the Phillies were indeed eliminated or they had won the pennant. I’d argue this headline would have worked in neither case.

___________________________________________

MILWAUKEE BREWERS  3, ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS 2

Brewers win series, 3-2

—

JOURNAL SENTINEL

Milwaukee, Wis.

Circulation: 194,436

The big story in Wisconsin was Nyjer Morgan, who knocked in the winning run in the 10th innning to clinch the win over the D-Backs. Just like Ryan Howard in Philly, you’ll see him over and over again on front pages across the state.

This huge six-column celebration shot is by the Journal Sentinel‘s Tom Lynn.

A great photo. Played large. The designer got the hell out of its way.

This is my favorite page of the day.

WISCONSIN STATE JOURNAL

Madison, Wis.

Circulation: 87,629

Nearly as good is this shot by David J. Phillip of the Associated Press.

GREEN BAY PRESS-GAZETTE

Green Bay, Wis.

Circulation: 43,278

Gannett Wisconsin Media staffer William Glasheen took this shot, expertly cropped and played big by the Press-Gazette of Green Bay.

POST-CRESCENT

Appleton, Wis.

Circulation: 38,805

Same photo; another Gannett paper.

JOURNAL TIMES

Racine, Wis.

Circulation: 26,525

While this crop by the Journal Times of Racine seems a bit awkward.

—

ARIZONA REPUBLIC

Phoenix, Ariz.

Circulation: 389,701

Check out the magnificent detail in this dugout anguish photo by Rob Schumacher of the Arizona Republic.

Is that awesome, or what? The designer at the Republic ran the picture over four-and-a-half columns today.

_____________________________

TONIGHT’S ALCS GAME:

DETROIT TIGERS at TEXAS RANGERS

8:05 p.m. EDT

—

DETROIT FREE PRESS

Detroit, Mich.

Circulation: 246,169

And, in Detroit, where the Free Press has been flying high this week along with the overachiving Tigers, the paper just can’t play the playoffs large enough on page one today.

That photo is by staffer Julian H. Gonzalez. The page was designed by Steve Anderson.

And here is the front of the Freep‘s baseball playoff section, newly reset for the ALCS with the Rangers.

The page — and the photoillustration — is by Ryan Ford.

—

DETROIT NEWS

Detroit, Mich.

Circulation: 141,668

The playoffs didn’t make nearly as big a splash on the front of the News

…but the News‘ own playoff wrap around today’s sports section was quite nice.

DALLAS MORNING NEWS

Dallas, Texas

Circulation: 404,951

And in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, tonight’s first game of the ALCS is big news. The story shared page one in Dallas with an equally big story, however, today’s Texas vs. Oklahoma game.

The photo there is by staffer Brad Loper.

STAR-TELEGRAM

Fort Worth, Texas

Circulation: 151,753

The Star-Telegram played the baseball game a little larger today, with a nice picture by staffer Max Faulkner.

RECORD-CHRONICLE

Denton, Texas

Circulation: 10,865

But the most interesting A1 play in Texas today is this one by the Record-Chronicle of Denton. Which featured a file photo of…

Huh? Austin Jackson of the Detroit Tigers?

Austin Jackson is a native of Denton and a graduate of Denton’s Ryan High School.

No matter how this series turns out, this little paper wins. Let’s hope they sell a big mess of copies this week.

Everything but the Detroit material here is from the Newseum. Of course.

Previous blog posts in which we look at baseball playoff pages:

An amazing coincidence regarding Harrisburg’s 9/11 page

You’re never going to believe this. Yet, it’s true.

David Newhouse — editor of the Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pa. — writes:

On Sept. 11, 2001, Maria Behr from the Harrisburg area was working as a securities trader at Cantor Fitzgerald in the World Trade Center.

She was one of 658 employees of the firm who perished when the north tower collapsed. She was one of two local folks who died on 9/11. (The other was a pilot on one of the planes.)

To put together Monday’s coverage of the 9/11 commemorations, we looked at hundreds of photos from The Associated Press and other news agencies. On Sunday night, we chose a New York photo for our front page. It showed a rose placed in the etched name of one of the victims. The photo had been shot by a photographer from the European Pressphoto Agency with no connection to our area. It was in no sense a local photo — to the photographer, the rose was placed in a random name out of 2,752 names. To us, it was in no sense a local photo — designer Megan Lavey chose it because it was eloquent.

That page was the only 9/11 page I posted yesterday. As I wrote then, it was, by far, the best page of the day. It seemed a fitting end to a long series of pages, graphics, photos and special sections I had been posting all week.

Here it is again:

The photographer, by the way, was New York-based freelancer Justin Lane.

David continues his story:

We were one of two papers around the country that used the photo similarly. The other was the Rockford Register Star.

 

For them, it truly was simply a beautiful photo. For us, by an incredible coincidence, it turned out to be something more.

Late Sunday night, it occurred to us that the name where the rose had been placed might possibly be that of Maria Behr. The first name was visible but only one letter of the last name. It probably would have hit me sooner if it had been the reverse. In any case, at that hour with and no way to verify it, we didn’t put anything in the paper or even bother Megan who was on deadline.

The next day, we contacted the European Pressphoto Agency to see if there was a larger, uncropped version. They sent it and it clearly showed that the name was that of Maria A. Behr.

You can’t make this stuff up, folks.

Today’s best 9/11 anniversary front

There was a lot of great work published yesterday.

A lot of it I reviewed in my marathon blog post last night. A lot of it showed up in galleries posted by Julie Moos of the Poynter Institute and by Yahoo News.

And there was a lot of it I didn’t see — I really wish I could have gotten my hands on the special anniversary section in yesterday’s New York Times, for example.

Some of the pages I received from folks, I didn’t get a chance to post. And pages are still pouring in, believe it or not.

While I thank everyone for their contributions, I think I’m about nine-elevened out for this year. I saw a number of wonderful pages in this morning’s Newseum collection but I think I’m going to post just one more — the best of the day — and declare the topic closed.

The best 9/11 memorial page I saw today was designed by my friend Megan Lavey-Heaton of the Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pa.

The best thing about that page? No headline. It didn’t need one.

Megs writes:

What’s so funny is that we began looking at your [blog] pages and Newseum during all of this and almost did a “We remember” head. After a photo change, I suggested no headline.

I think in this case, the picture is worth any headline.

The picture, by the way, is by Justin Lane of the Associated Press.

Great job, Meg. Great job everyone.

That front page is from the Newseum. Of course.

Previous 9/11 anniversary posts here in the blog…

Sunday: Please send me your 9/11 presentations.

Tuesday: First three days of the Boston Globe‘s remarkable anniversary series.

Tuesday: The best of the rest of the 9/11 anniversary pages, so far.

Tuesday: How we got all those incredible photos on 9/11.

Wednesday: The day’s notable anniversary pages.

Friday: How college newspapers covered the anniversary.

Saturday: Friday and Saturday’s notable anniversary pages.

Sunday: A look at the day’s most remarkable 9/11 pages.

More great work showing the flooding in Pennsylvania

First of all, please accept my apologies for showing only pages from Harrisburg last night. I had intended to post pages from around the state but my epic on how college newspapers around the country are remembering 9/11 took up quite a bit more time that I had anticipated.

Therefore, today’s post will include Pennsylvania pages from both Friday and Saturday.

All of these page images are from the Newseum. Of course.

CITIZENS’ VOICE

Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

Circulation: 45,608

Flooding along the Susquehanna was particularly heavy in Wilkes-Barre. The tabloid Citizens’ Voice ran this shocking photo on page one Friday.

One thing I don’t like about this wonderful little tab: It doesn’t run photo credits on page one. Therefore, I can’t tell you who shot that picture, or the nice aerial on the front of today’s paper.

Check out that headline, though. Despite a record-setting flood level, the levee system held. It’s nice to see some good news for the beleaguered folks of Pennsylvania.

PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

Philadelphia, Pa.

Circulation: 343,710

The big-city Inquirer also led its Friday front with a picture of a bridge over the Susquehanna in Wilkes-Barre.

The picture is by Inky staffer Clem Murray.

WILLIAMSPORT SUN-GAZETTE

Williamsport, Pa.

Circulation: 23,575

I’m told that Williamsport itself isn’t affected by  flooding but the surrounding communities are. The big problem up there is that the volume of water has washed away a number of bridges, which is going to cause havoc on the rural roadways in the area.

That picture by staffer Mark Nance — showing what’s left of the Route 973 bridge over Loyalsock Creek — was lead art on Friday’s front.

 

Today, as you can see, the story is that the waters have receded and folks have started the long process of trying to clean up. Today’s trio of lead pictures were also taken by Mark Nance.

YORK DAILY RECORD

York, Pa.

Circulation: 56,040

Flooding has also been brutal in York. Here was Friday’s front page, showing folks boating across the Susquehanna in Goldsboro.

That picture was by Daily Record staffer Chris Dunn.

Unfortunately, today’s front didn’t make it to the Newseum. If anyone in York has time today to email me a PDF, I’d be glad to add them here.

TIMES-TRIBUNE

Scranton, Pa.

Circulation: 48,408

Friday’s Scranton paper led with this staff picture by Charles Schollinger, showing a man attempting a rescue in the swollen Susquehanna in West Pittston.

The man who needed rescuing had tried to ride a bicycle across all that water. Insert your own wisecrack here.

The folks at the Times-Tribune are using their awesome photos large, which is good. They seem to love the 1993-style gradients in their huge headlines, though, which is not quite so good.

 

The raft rescue picture afront today’s paper is by staffer Michael J. Mullen.

INTELLIGENCER JOURNAL/NEW ERA

Lancaster, Pa.

Circulation: 79,620

When I first saw this picture — on the front of Friday’s Lancaster paper — I thought it was pretty silly for those folks in Mount Joy to be using a raft. That water can’t possibly be any more than shin-deep.

But then I saw how far up the water comes on the garage doors. And it becomes apparent that front yard isn’t quite as flat as they are here in Virginia Beach.

Man. That’s a lot of water.

That awesome picture is by staffer Justin David Graybill of the Intelligencer Journal/New Era.

 

Again, you see today’s front — on the right — showing the floodwaters gone and folks starting their cleanup. Today’s picture is by staffer Richard Hertzler.

MORNING CALL

Allentown, Pa.

Circulation: 106,021

While most of the Pennsylvania papers you’re seeing followed the basic rule of thumb of news design on big days like this — Find a great photo, play it huge and get the hell out of its way — the Allentown paper Friday did something a little different.

The Morning Call found a great photo, played it huge… and then slapped an infographic over half of it.

Now, don’t get me wrong. The graphic — by staffer Jessica DeLorenzo — is very interesting and well-done.

But I dislike this kind of overlapping. Especially on a day when you have live art like this. Even if it’s from another paper — in this case, that’s a picture by Mark Moran of the Wilkes-Barre Citizen’s Voice.

Run a smaller picture up top with the decks and devote more space to the graphic. Or vice-versa.

PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW

Pittsburgh, Pa.

Circulation: 190,625

Folks in the western part of the state haven’t been affected at all, which is why I’ve not shown you any papers from there. However, I want to show you today’s Tribune-Review because of the awesome headline.

You see a headline like that these days and you’d swear you’re reading about Tripoli, right?

The picture from the Associated Press shows folks who have just helped launch boats to take the mayor on a tour around Harrisburg.

PATRIOT-NEWS

Harrisburg, Pa.

Circulation: 71,834

Which brings us back to that besieged capital city. Patriot-News designer Megan Lavey-Heaton tipped us off last night about the awesome aerials that would be played prominently in today’s paper.

And, sure enough, feast you eyes on this incredible shot of the Shipoke section of Harrisburg.

That’s by Patriot-News staffer Sean Simmers. Played nice and large by designere Jon Gass and accompanied by a wonderful, wonderful headline.

Man, the folks in Harrisburg have been doing fabulous work this week.

As you can see from that overline, the Patriot-News ran 12 pages of flood coverage today. Megan was able to send us eight of the 12.

Page three features a nice picture by staffer John C. Whitehead of the state’s First Lady chatting folks up at a shelter.

Megs designed that page and the next one, containing a shocking picture of what’s left of Route 422 in North Londonderry Township.

That lead picture is by staffer Chris Knight.

Page five — designed by Joe McClure — uses another of Sean Simmers’ great aerial shots. This one is of Second Street, there in Harrisburg.

Meg designed page six, topped by a large photo of the mayor setting sail on her tour of downtown.

I’m guessing the shooter here, Christine Baker, also took that picture that wound up on front of the Pittsburgh paper today.

This next lead picture might be my favorite of the day. This is a man in Hellam, Pa., wading through waist-deep water carrying the essentials of life: Dog food and beer.

The picture is by Jason Plotkin of the York Daily Record. Page seven, here, was where much of the flooding news from around the state ended up today.

Joe McClure designed that page along with the next one, page eight.

And the Patriot-News used the features front today to list a bunch of step-by-step tips on how to begin your recovery from the flood.

Meg isn’t sure but she thinks Mallory Szymanski might have designed that one.

Find all the Patriot-News‘ online flood coverage here.

All of these page images — except the ones from Harrisburg — are from the Newseum. Of course.

Previous blog posts about the flooding in Pennsylvania: