ERIC Number: ED239294
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1983
Reference Count: N/A
"USA Today": Comparative Analysis with Two National and Two Los Angeles Daily Newspapers. Research Bulletin.
Ames, Steve; And Others
Sections of the newspaper "USA Today" were compared with corresponding sections of four major newspapers--the "New York Times," the "Wall Street Journal," the "Los Angeles Herald Examiner," and the "Los Angeles Times"--to determine what editorial components made "USA Today" different and whether the paper would succeed. Judgment criteria included graphics and typography, advertising, editing, content relevance, sports, editorial pages, and reader reaction. A list of conclusions and recommendations for the "USA Today" editors was devised based on the analysis: (1) the front page is too crowded; (2) the technical reproduction aspect is outstanding; (3) one or two stories per issue should be covered in depth; (4) news receiving coverage should be significant; (5) the simple graphic strategies and the single approach to the opinion/editorial page is a strong asset and should be used as a selling point; (6) the use of bright, attractive colors and the extensive presentation of previews and statistics make the sports section a definite plus; (7) more coverage should be given to women's and less popular sports; (8) the "Life" section is low key and well-organized, appealing successfully to both sexes; (9) the paper's national circulation precludes entertainment listings, usually an important feature; and (10) the "Money" section needs the most improvement, including more in-depth reporting on world and national economic news, and strategic use of color. The study concluded that the paper needs an approach other than "news in a hurry for a nation in a hurry" if it is to succeed. (Appendixes contain correspondence and reference materials.) (HTH)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Pepperdine Univ., Malibu, CA., Seaver Coll.