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Aug 13, 2008

Philadelphia Inquirer to maximize breaking news coverage online, focus on "competitive" stories

Philadelphia Inquirer to maximize breaking news coverage online, focus on "competitive" stories

Alisa Zykova on August 13, 2008 at 12:25 PM
A memo sent to the staff at the Philadelphia Inquirer explained that the paper should try to cover as much breaking news online as possible, especially if the content is something that readers can get elsewhere or "that benefits from the strengths of the Web", reportedPoynter.org

"Our goal is to publish our content in our products in a thoughtful way. Use our powerful Web site for its reach, immediacy, ability to connect readers with each other and ability to build deep packages," read the memo.

The paper's managing editor recently announced a new policy whereby articles are not to be published online before they have been published in print, a move that some called "backward".

The memo pointed out that the stories that should be put online include:

-Plenty of breaking news
-Competitive stories that other media outlets may be reporting on
-Stories/reviews that may help plan readers' weekends, such as movie or theatre reviews
-Reviews of events that may "end too late for the print editions", e.g. films, concerts, sports

The memo also mentioned that content that should appear simultaneously online and in print is: 

-Columns that readers enjoy even if they may not contain breaking news
-Exclusive stories
-Feature stories that don't have a competitive need to be published online first

Source: Poynter Romenesko

US: Questions on the NYT Continuous News Desk

David Stout, of The New York Times, is currently answering questions in the paper's regular Talk to the Newsroom feature. Stout, a domestic correspondent for the Continuous News Desk explains some of the challenges facing the desk in the 24 hour news cycle - "We are constantly trying to balance speed and accuracy" - and what the Continuous News Desk, one found in just a handful of newsrooms across the country, actually does. 

"Part of my job is to synthesize the reporting of my colleagues. In return for their help, I try to repay them by keeping them apprised of news developments (I keep a constant eye on wire service reports) and, occasionally, going to news conferences," explains Stout.

He adds, "My job, generally, is to write a quicker, and therefore less detailed, version of an article about a court decision than will appear in the following day's newspaper. I think there is a need for both kinds of articles in this day of 24-hour news.|

In early 2007, the Editors Weblog interviewed Neil Chase, then editor of the Continuous News Desk. 

Ed: Newspapers learning to blog.

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