Monthly Archives: March 2012

Hoot! Six Sources Prove on a Trend Story (Plus Historical Context and Future Predictions).

Kudos go to Philadelphia City Paper’s John Vettese for his inquisitive and well-sourced article from Feb. 23 on the growing number of rock clubs in Center City and why that influx is occurring in 2012.

Vettese’s article makes an astute observation: besides The Trocadero, there weren’t many rock venues in or around Center City. That, according to Vettese and his sources, has resulted in fragmented audiences: “You can play a show in South Philly, and you’ll only see that crowd in South Philly,” says Goldilocks Gallery’s Matthew McDermott.

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Hoot! Objective Journalism Still Exists!

This story from the Philadelphia Inquirer talks about the latest decision of Philadelphia School District to turn four schools into chartered schools.

This article opens up with a typical lead that contains the what, why and how elements. The reporter provides the detail about how the city school district plans to turn these schools over to chartered organizations. On the other hand, the reporter is able to provide the voice on the other side that represents the Philadelphia Teachers Union. By balancing the story with voice from two sides, the reporter shows the typical trait of objectivity of journalism.

After presenting voices from both sides, the reporter then starts to provide some background information to provide the story more depth. It also allows readers to link back to what has happened in the past and offers a clearer understanding of what’s the whole operation going to be about.

Besides background information, the reporter also provides the future direction of the whole event. The Philadelphia School District’s decision on other schools is of the top interest of parents and other school teachers. This strategy can effectively lead the story to other possible follow up stories in the future. Then the reporter enlarges the range of discussion to the overall examination of school performance and how that might affect their destiny in the future.

One little part that the article can try to improve is the part when the reporter lists out the general information of the schools. For an article that actually has other more valuable things to focus on, the reporter actually can omit this part, especially since the readers of the Inquirer are based in the Philadelphia area. Putting all that information in one paragraph will be a little bit too dull. In order to not disinterest the readers, the reporter can actually assume that people know where those schools are and use that portion for a better purpose.

– Text by Hao Wei Yang.