Online stories, Nov. 1, critique

Best things:

       Destine continues to grow as a sports writer. Her weekend volleyball coverage was filled with great play-by-play and active verbs. She tells us what happened in the weekend matches but also spins things forward and maps out the remainder of the season with good quote usage. I always say that writing about elections is not much different than writing about sports: there is a winner and a loser, perspective matters and active verbs rule. We should all be reading our sports stories heading into the final week of our election coverage.

Good work covering the early voting turnout and the PSU’s march to the polls on Monday. These are the types of election stories that keep students in the know as we head into the home stretch.

Zahraa turned out another interesting Ransacked. Again, it’s not about the backpack. She has turned this feature into mini student profiles because she uses the objects in the bag to spur conversation and give her a built-in curiosity point. This feature is great training for interviewing.

Needs improvement:

       Editing was sloppy today with things like this creeping in: Students will like how professionally it is, Fox said.

       I can’t speak for Jennifer Fox, but I’m guessing that’s not what she said. Be careful.

 

Let’s also be aware of our election terms and how we write about numbers.

To avoid bumping numbers in this sentence, let’s re-order it:

 

Before: Oct. 24, 43,147 county residents voted the first day of early voting, said Stephen Vickers, Tarrant County assistant elections administrator.

After: On Oct. 24, the first day of early voting, 43,147 residents went to the polls, said Stephen Vickers, Tarrant County assistant elections administrator.

 

We also need to make sure we’re being parallel with our numbers and using the correct words:

Before: The rise ranged from less than 2,000 extra votes in El Paso County to an increase of more than 25,000 votes in Harris County.

After: The increases ranged from fewer than 2,000 additional votes in El Paso County to more than 25,000 additional votes in Harris County.”

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