Sunday, April 06, 2008

Even when they win an award, it's a joke

The Best of Gannett awards were announced on Thursday. This is so pathetic ....

The Enquirer won three awards, and none for journalism. Nothing for public service, nothing for breaking news, nothing for investigations, nothing for freedom of information. There was one first-place award for innovation, a third place for "community conversation" and a third place for local-local news.

The innovation was the CinciNavigator. This is a good piece of work, but it's not an innovation. Other newspapers have been doing more with data for 10 years or longer. The Enquirer finally joins the party in 2007, and Gannett applauds. This just shows how far behind the curve Gannett is. While the news awards were judged by a panel of eight people who do not work for Gannett, the innovation awards were judged by three career Gannettoids.

The community conversation was about Brenda Nesselroad-Slaby and the death of her child in a hot car. First place and second place went to the Des Moines Register, for conversations about long-term care insurance for the elderly and the presidential primaries. Is the Gannett pool this shallow?

The phrase "local-local" is a mantra in Gannett and a joke everywhere else. What is local-local? It's somehow more local than local news, but not as local as local-local-local news. The Enquirer won its third-place local-local award for its coverage of Lakota high school's 50th anniversary, and the Lakota West marching band's trip to the Rose Bowl parade.

Not one Enquirer award was for anything that has made a difference in this community -- no ill was corrected, no taxpayer money saved, no public policy improved, no one put in jail. Nothing embodied in these awards fulfilled what Finley Peter Dunne said a hundred years ago should be the duty of journalists -- to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. The Enquirer has never been hard hitting, and now it's actually winning awards for going even softer.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

What do you expect for a shopper?

5:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was hoping you would post about this when I read in my non-Gannett newsroom about the awards. I was laughing so hard I almost spit on my desk!

This newspaper (and I use the term loosely) is making a laughingstock of itself.

I don't know why people still work there. The bennies are not great, salaries not competitive and if you want to do journalism ...

Oh, I mean journalism at a real newspaper.

Lois Lane

12:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cross Posted from the Cincinnati Beacon, where certain hypocritical comment nazi's delete comments that they don't like.


Shorter JJ: No one is giving Nader any money!!! WWAAAAA!!!!

Business sees the handwriting on the wall, and they no that the Dems are going to win in November, and they are going to back the winner, not the loser. And no one will lose bigger than Nader is going to lose. A half hour of free airtime couldn't give him within a mile of a prayer of winning. Much like your own campaign for council.

I love how you rail against 'big business', and meanwhile own a huge stock portfolio in Wal Mart, GM, and many of the biggest of Big Business stocks. Does that make you a hypocrite? When you divest yourself of Wal Mart stock (who are the biggest offender responsible for the export of American jobs to China) then, and only then, do you posses some iota of moral high ground from which you may lecture the rest of us.

2:21 AM  

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