Paper Critique: Friday Parthenon- September 18, 2015
There were several unfulfilled cases of macro-editing in this Parthenon Weekend Edition. The largest issue is the content, headlines and ordering of the paper’s stories. Multiple stories bring about questions as to what interest the intended audience would have in such a topic. The paper is based almost exclusively on events involving the Marshall University campus and the Huntington area, but the presence of stories with content that is likely unappealing to the audience is at a surplus.
For example the lead story of the paper is headlined “Elementary students enjoy a day on campus for Water Festival”. Do college students, who are the paper’s primary intended audience, have much of an interest in reading about elementary school students learning about water and environmental factors? The news has no impact on college students, and any information regarding the relationship of water and the environment in the story is likely simplistic because the event was for elementary students.
The rest of the stories on the news page were about job safety, a on photojournalists students were invited to attend and a Pumpkin Festival. The story on job safety struggled to carry weight for college students in terms of appeal, and the content of the story is vague and simplistic.
The film on photojournalists covers how while photojournalism restrictions have changed in Afghanistan, but photojournalists are constantly under threat from groups such as the Taliban. Even for students not studying photojournalism, the film presents a view into a world issue. However, the headline of the story is “‘Frame by Frame’ film playing in Smith Hall 154 Friday.” Instead of using the name on the film, why not describe what it is about? More readers are likely to understand what the story is about if it contains something about photojournalism in Afghanistan as opposed to the film title.
The Pumpkin Festival story may draw some interest, however, the interest of the reader is compromised as the story is almost exclusively on the festival’s 5K. The story ignored details pertaining to festival’s events and refreshments. They were mentioned, but were vague.
There are cases of reporter’s drawing inferences in stories, which should not be done in hard news stories. Keep all things objective. Also paragraphs in stories should’ve been rearranged on multiple occasions to create better flow in stories as well as give readers the most important information first. Weak verbs in a number of headlines and the usual dose of micro-editing AP style errors were also issues.