Americans are abandoning daily newspapers. Why? Firstly, newspapers ignore their audiences. People have limited time. Yet the more ponderous papers write turgid, long articles. Take the front page of a recent LA Times. The introduction to the main story was 41 words. Next sentence 37, next 31. Another big story had a lead of 34 words. The “news analysis” on the front page told me Castro outlasted 9 US presidents, more than a week after Castro stepped down. The introduction was also 34 words. Second paragraph 43. The story was written in Mexico City. Indeed, most of the foreign stories (apart from Iraq) did not originate from the country they were written about. The page 3 lead about Kosovo came from Rome. The Iran story originated from Beirut. Summary: irrelevant stories that ignore the fact readers live busy lives. Many papers appear to be nothing more than vehicles for advertising.
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