Now that the first-week dust has settled, I think we’ve been able to better notice aspects of the transition that are working and areas that could be improved. Laura, I definitely agree promoting the big picture is an area where we’re succeeding. I think most everyone in the newsroom is aware of what we’re doing with the website and print, and I’ve only heard excitement about it.
As far as I know, no reporters have been grumbling that their byline might not make it to print, which was something I was worried might happen. Instead, they’re motivated to get their stories to the website as quickly as possible (which will hopefully happen even more quickly once the reporters become experienced).
This week, I zeroed in on improvements that could be made at the print desk. We’ve hit the ground running with our designers, making deadline each night no matter how content is flowing in. We have a talented bunch, and I’m really excited to see us become more adventurous in our designs.
We did have an inaccurate headline written on the print desk this week. I don’t want to call anyone out for that, but I think we all need to realize even though everyone on the desk is working hard on their individual tasks, it never hurts to get more eyes on a page and dispatch it to the copy editor and TAs. I know the first week I became so wrapped up in doing everything for my pages that I barely used the copy editor and TAs, and I almost ran out of time because of that. This week, I used the copy editor and TAs for some headlines and edits.
We just need to be aware there’s only one copy editor, so we need to dispatch items at a reasonable rate. And if we’re still uncertain about something, we need to remember we can venture out into the rest of the newsroom and find an editor or reporter to answer our question.
Something else that could be helpful for the print desk giving the ICD access to the print budget. I realize articles that are going into print won’t always take priority in Rim, but as I watched the queues for stories that were going on my pages, I noticed a few times the ICEs were choosing to read unimportant wire briefs before my stories, meaning I had to wait longer to get a jump on my design. Maybe I’m just being selfish for wanting my stories to come in faster, but I think it’s something to consider.
This coming week, designers will be working on making use of display type and info boxes to really illustrate stories. I’d love to hear any of your suggestions for print, as we continue to branch out with our designs and content.