Tis the season….
What better way to harness the holiday spirit than critique my former home-away-from-home, the Kansas City Star.
You may recall I let my subscription lapse last year before hopping back aboard last summer. The break allowed me to take a fresh look at the Star.
Not surprisingly, my first reaction was negative.
Tons of white space in the newspaper’s redesign but it just really work. By comparison to USA Today, for example, it looked amateurish and small town.
Maybe it was the editor’s failure to make good on the pledge of ramping up news coverage with more cutting edge investigative pieces. No small feat given that most of the investigative reporters had been axed or flew the coup.
Instead, readers continued to be fed a diet of day-old, filler national news and alongside boring local columnists like Mary Sanchez.
All of that said, things are looking up at 18th & Grand.
For starters, the lion’s share of the newspaper’s long-in-the-tooth Baby Boomer writers have bit the dust and are being replaced by younger reporters infusing the Star with fresh blood and ideas. Unfortunately, they’re still under the thumbs of old school editors, but at least things are starting to look up.
One positive improvement; they’re putting far sexier, more compelling headlines on the news shorts.
These are stories that used to be garnished with the most mundane, boring headlines imaginable.
Example: “Overland Park man sentenced to jail for leaving 2015 crash that killer toddler” and “Convicted clothing thief now accused of stealing bras” and “Rolling gun fight after Lee’s Summit party leaves one person injured.”
Those are headlines draw readers in, as opposed to making their eye’s glaze over.
Small step for mankind, but at least it’s a step in the right direction.