Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I Hate: The Re-formatted Chicago Tribune

It’s all bloggy now. I can’t even wrap fish with the new Chicago Tribune because of all the gross colored ink. If I wanted USA Today-style graphic charts and a rip-off of The Daily Beast, I’d write it myself. Worse, navigating this new Trib is like smacking at a piñata without the benefit of arms. Where did my newspaper go? I can't reach it!

Sam Zell (Tribune Owner/Grave Dancer) must think we are the stupidest rubes in the whole world. He can continue riding his motorcycle to work everyday and park it in his rear for all I care. Zell is a complete anus, so I’m sure he can easily fit a Harley up in there.

One day I was enjoying credible journalism printed on real paper. The next day, my news was printed on a whisper-thin suggestion of paper, and it looks like tabloid-ish puke. The new Trib is loud, too, like a pair of fingerpainted clown shoes. I’m supposed to have my coffee over that? What a great idea. I think I’ll try trepanning with a jackhammer during lunch hour, too.

Fewer people buy newspapers these days, so the papers are trying to be more competitive by designing themselves to look like on-line news sources and blogs. The end result for news, in most cases, is something that should be set on fire while simultaneously flushing it down the toilet. It’s not like this stuff would clog the pipes or anything. It’s too thin to cause any damage.

The new Trib is the broth of a newspaper – a sodium-packed bouillon cube that causes hypertension. It is bad for you. Sure, it looks pretty and it’s packaged well. You know what else comes wrapped in a fun package? Cancer. Cancer arrives in exciting cigarette cartons, or it is marketed as a colorful sugar substitute. While the new Trib certainly makes a visual statement, I am utterly convinced that it’s going to kill us.

Zell – this is what I want: if you can’t print this blog of yours on decent paper, at least print it on feminine napkins. I might find that useful. Ease up on the colored ink, please. I’m sensitive down there.

God, please send a wave of locusts to the Chicago Tribune. Amen.

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Minnie-sota said...

Newspapers keep wondering how they can differentiate themselves in this market. Well, offer us some in-depth news that is not being covered in the blogosphere.

I miss the old Detroit Free Press. Now, that was paper.

Your friend, Rusty said...

"McPaper" is what I called USA Today when it came out. Sorry to see the Trib has joined it in the fast food aisle.

Anonymous said...

I hate when they change something good for no apparent reason. And I especially hate the fucktard Highlight magazine look to a lot of periodicals I used to read. Now I use them as litter filler for the kittens.


Minnie-sota said...

Rusty, I was still a journalist when USA Today began their format was a matter of big discussion in the profession. Does anyone remember a weely paper called The National Observer? It operated from 1962 to 1977. It was one of my favorites.

GOPnot4me said...

If I don't get a chance later...

Happy Thanksgiving, Mojo!

All my best to you and yours.

As you slide down the bannister of life, may all the slivers be pointed the other way.

Lv, MZ (GOPnot4me)

Mojopo said...

Thanks, GOP. I have much catching up to do with you over the holiday. I just love your blog.

Minnie - I looked up The National Observer after your comment. I didn't get a chance to read it, but I love that Hunter S. Thompson was on-board. My kind of paper.

Mojopo said...

Speedy, I hear you about Highlights. Such trash!

Minnie has a good game plan. Gimme something that the blogs haven't raped and I'll keep buying papers. It's that easy.

PapaPig said...

I feel dumb. All the discussion on TV and blogs about the demise of newspapers, and Minni had it nailed. Just do some real investigative reporting!

There is one thing I did notice. During the same period of time, when there was still investigative reporting, Ralph Nader was also considered a good guy.

As soon as the MSM went to "experts" on topics, with no investigation, Ralph was considered a trouble maker for actually looking into things.

The disease of thin reporting is a symptom, not the cause.

frankthetank said...

I'm glad that I'm not the only one out there that has thought this way about the new Tribune. I understand that the newspaper industry needs to find new readers, but in fashioning this redesign, the Tribune has appeared to use focus groups of people who don't like to read anything. I've written a couple of blog posts on the new Tribune and the state of the newspaper industry:

How to Kill a Newspaper

Someone Vomited on My Newspaper