Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Communicators: Keep up with NYT, NPR changes

Change is afoot everywhere in journalism, but at heavy-hitters like the New York Times and NPR, you might need a scorecard and some popcorn to keep 'em straight. Here, some updates and background to share with your media relations team:

At the New York Times:
  • Shifts in science, 9/11 coverage: The Times has a new science editor, Barbara Strauch, who formerly edited health coverage; former science editor Laura Chang will oversee the cross-departmental coverage of the tenth anniversary of the World Trade Center attacks on 9/11. Both shifts take place next week, March 15. The science role isn't limited to the weekly science section, and oversees science, health and environment reporting throughout the paper.
  • Renaming and reframing: The magazine has begun a major overhaul, one that will be phased in over several weeks. Yahoo! News has a sneak peek at changes at the NYT magazine, from renaming the letters column "Reply All" to a monthly column by a physician and a photographer Q-and-A coming in as regular features. Not all features will be weekly, suggesting greater variety over time.
  • Editors' credits emerge: The magazine also has begun including editor credits, in addition to reporter bylines. Nieman Labs thinks editor credits are a good thing, helpful for accountability, though others disagree. NL also looks at the credits' format, which includes editorial email addresses.
  • Pulling content from the social sphere: I've read plenty of Times coverage that viewed social media askance, with a type of "this is still happening?" tone. But this weekend, the New York Times magazine published an essay, "The Tire Iron and the Tamale," that would be great content anywhere: It's a heart-tugging, beautifully written personal essay. It just so happens that they found it on Reddit.com, a social site, a move that's already getting good reviews.

Stand by for more changes, and feel free to share your observations in the comments. (Photo from churl's photostream on Flickr)

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