POLITICAL PLAY of the WEEK: Political News Reporting by SB Daily Sound
After 17 months in existence publishing Monday through Friday, Santa Barbara Daily Sound has matured nicely as a reliable source of local news where the reporting gets to the point and does not just repeat the spin, or miss the story altogether, as is the norm at the other daily “newspaper.” And all that at Daily Sound with only two news reporters, plus an arts dude/editor who sometimes writes news and sports too.
The randomly scattered Daily Sound print distribution still sucks, but at least they have an okay web site now, no longer restricted to Microsoft software. It also is all free access to all editions.
Yes, the News-Less-Press-Suppress-Mess often gets the scoop on A story, but seldom if ever THE story for local political or usually any interest. How many articles about Lompoc crime, the opening of a Santa Maria Library, or parts 1 through 12 of the boB-the-Tortoise saga do we really need here?
Sure, Daily Sound is no News-Press at its peak 20+ months ago during the November 2005 City election, but this Little Newspaper That Can is now turning out a consistent database of the new News of Record for Santa Barbara. If only their web site had a search function, we then could find those records.
If their news content shriveled and their advertisers fled, as we have seen in the other daily with lots of unpaid content on its pages, Daily Sound readers then could see more color photos by Janelle Holcombe, the long-time local gal and Brooks Institute graduate who seems to get her ambitious photos published from only one out of three events she covers. Daily Sound has too much news text to leave much room for news photos. They really need to learn easily how to insert photos and other images into their Blogspot web site, as easily demonstrated here.
Most recently, the Daily Sound new City Beat reporter, Eric Lindberg (three months on the job and freshly graduated from USC Annenberg J-School), already is starting to write like a seasoned Josh Molina with his acute nose for barnyard epithets passing off as news. The separate profiles last week of Santa Barbara City Council candidates Frank Hotchkiss and Dale Francisco were as if Josh “don’t-make-me-use-a-Public-Records-Act-request” Molina were on the byline. (No, not going to remind some readers here who Josh Molina is or locally was.)
The point here is not that these were deep investigations of just how wacky and inexperienced these candidates really are, but rather that a profile article was done at all early in this Silly Season. Granted, those candidates were quoted extensively to reveal their true, often off-point, myopic motivations for running for City Council, but profiles of the other candidates, later comparisons among the eight candidates, and enterprise news stories certainly seem like they would be on the long-range scheduling calendar for Daily Sound reporter Eric Lindberg.
As yet another anonymous blogger commenting about local newspapers, that’s the Play of the Week!
(Suggestions for comments: this Blogabarbara posting is about local political news coverage, not the maturity of Daily Sound Publisher/Trust-Fund-Baby Jeramy Gordon and his puzzling admiration of John Stossel and Robert Novak as syndicated opinion columnists.)