Sunday, March 30, 2008

AP breakthrough: news and an op-ed in a single article

As the cost of newsprint skyrockets, the AP's Charles J. Hanley is doing his best to save space. By combining news "reporting" and op-ed analysis into a single article, he's helpfully assisting editors' cost-cutting initiatives.

An example: "'Standing Up' Iraq Army Looks Open-Ended":

...The 2004-05 Defense Ministry scandal was just one in an unending series of setbacks in the five-year struggle to "stand up" an Iraqi military...

A straight news reporter would have written a challenging series.

...Responsibility for these ever-unfulfilled goals lies in Washington, contends retired Maj. Gen. Paul D. Eaton, who preceded Petraeus as chief trainer in Iraq...

A straight news reporter would have written these unmet goals.

...A look back by the AP, as the Iraq conflict enters its sixth year, finds the $22 billion training effort has been a story of uncertain steps and policy reversals, corruption, questionable numbers and distrust, ending with an Iraqi military with narrow capabilities and years more "standing up" ahead...

A straight news reporter would have written fraught with difficulty and some sporadic successes.

Congratulations to Hanley and the AP for this breakthrough combination of news and an op-ed into a single, space-saving article!

More info: StrategyPage - Iraqis fight like Americans

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