Reckless | Chicago Reader

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Re: “Doing Face Time

I don't know about the Tribune or other publications, but being familiar with the St. Petersburg Times, I can say that in my view the paper has had questionable ethics and news judgement on a number of stories over the years, beginning with its beat-a-dead-horse coverage of Scientology. But that's a different story. When it comes to publishing mugs of petty criminals who would not be newsworthy otherwise, the practice falls right in line with what the Times is at its core. Its circulation is relatively large, and the paper puts a lot of effort into a handful of worthwhile endeavors, such as statewide politics and coverage of three local professional sports teams. But fundamentally, it is a collection of community news sections that publish mostly small potatoes, nicke-and-dime stories. The paper's strength is no more sophisticated than telling people what is happening down their streets. Its frustratingly local for anyone wishing a bigger picture of the world or more intellectual engagement. Hence things like the mug shots. A visitor from outside Tampa Bay might be surprised at what makes news in the St. Petersurg Times. The quality of its journalism falls well short of its good reputation.

Posted by Reckless on 12/16/2010 at 7:10 PM

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