Detail, east Portland photo, courtesy Miles Hochstein / Portland Ground.

For old times' sake
The bojack bumper sticker -- only $1.50!

To order, click here.

Excellent tunes -- free! And on your browser right now. Just click on Radio Bojack!

E-mail us here.


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on August 8, 2012 8:51 AM. The previous post in this blog was Portland school construction bond -- the new other white meat. The next post in this blog is A new coach for the Blazers. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



Law and Taxation
How Appealing
TaxProf Blog
Mauled Again
Tax Appellate Blog
A Taxing Matter
Josh Marquis
Native America, Discovered and Conquered
The Yin Blog
Ernie the Attorney
Above the Law
The Volokh Conspiracy
Going Concern
Bag and Baggage
Wealth Strategies Journal
Jim Hamilton's World of Securities Regulation
World of Work
The Faculty Lounge
Lowering the Bar
OrCon Law

Hap'nin' Guys
Tony Pierce
Parkway Rest Stop
Along the Gradyent
Dwight Jaynes
Bob Borden
Dingleberry Gazette
The Red Electric
Iced Borscht
Jeremy Blachman
Dean's Rhetorical Flourish
Straight White Guy
As Time Goes By
Dave Wagner
Jeff Selis
Alas, a Blog
Scott Hendison
The View Through the Windshield
Appliance Blog
The Bleat

Hap'nin' Gals
My Whim is Law
Lelo in Nopo
Attorney at Large
Linda Kruschke
The Non-Consumer Advocate
10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place
A Pig of Success
Attorney at Large
Margaret and Helen
Kimberlee Jaynes
Cornelia Seigneur
And Sew It Goes
Mile 73
Rainy Day Thoughts
That Black Girl
Posie Gets Cozy
Cat Eyes
Rhi in Pink
Ragwaters, Bitters, and Blue Ruin
Rose City Journal
Type Like the Wind

Portland and Oregon
Isaac Laquedem
Rantings of a [Censored] Bus Driver
Jeff Mapes
Vintage Portland
The Portlander
South Waterfront
Amanda Fritz
O City Hall Reporters
Guilty Carnivore
Old Town by Larry Norton
The Alaunt
Bend Blogs
Lost Oregon
Cafe Unknown
Tin Zeroes
David's Oregon Picayune
Mark Nelsen's Weather Blog
Travel Oregon Blog
Portland Daily Photo
Portland Building Ads
Portland Food and
Dave Knows Portland
Idaho's Portugal
Alameda Old House History
MLK in Motion

Retired from Blogging
Various Observations...
The Daily E-Mail
Saving James
Portland Freelancer
Furious Nads (b!X)
Izzle Pfaff
The Grich
Kevin Allman
AboutItAll - Oregon
Lost in the Details
Worldwide Pablo
Tales from the Stump
Whitman Boys
Two Pennies
This Stony Planet
1221 SW 4th
I am a Fish
Here Today
What If...?
Superinky Fixations
The Rural Bus Route
Another Blogger
Mikeyman's Computer Treehouse
Portland Housing Blog

Wonderfully Wacky
Dave Barry
Borowitz Report
Stuff White People Like
Worst of the Web

Valuable Time-Wasters
My Gallery of Jacks
Litterbox, On the Prowl
Litterbox, Bag of Bones
Litterbox, Scratch
Ride That Donkey
Singin' Horses
Rally Monkey
Simon Swears
Strong Bad's E-mail

Oregon News
The Oregonian
Portland Tribune
Willamette Week
The Sentinel
Southeast Examiner
Northwest Examiner
Sellwood Bee
Mid-County Memo
Vancouver Voice
Eugene Register-Guard
OPB - Portland
Salem Statesman-Journal
Oregon Capitol News
Portland Business Journal
Daily Journal of Commerce
Oregon Business
Portland Info Net
McMinnville News Register
Lake Oswego Review
The Daily Astorian
Bend Bulletin
Corvallis Gazette-Times
Roseburg News-Review
Medford Mail-Tribune
Ashland Daily Tidings
Newport News-Times
Albany Democrat-Herald
The Eugene Weekly
Portland IndyMedia
The Columbian

The Beatles
Bruce Springsteen
Joni Mitchell
Ella Fitzgerald
Steve Earle
Joe Ely
Stevie Wonder
Lou Rawls

E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The end of the O, as told by Willy Week

The enthusiasm with which the bad news is reported here is a little unseemly. Old grudges die hard, apparently.

For our part, we'll be sorry to see Portland's daily become a three-weekly, or whatever. But we must admit that reading it on paper has turned into a real oddity for us. We've cancelled the free subscription they were delivering to our house. Except for the A&E section, it was just a pile of papers containing stories we had already read on line.

WW hits the nail on the head, however, in blasting the O's website. That thing is bad. And it isn't as if they haven't had time to get it right. They've been at it for a decade or so, and it's still dreadful.

Comments (21)

I wouldn't call it "enthusiasm" so much as "gallows humor". As the staffs at other weeklies nationwide have discovered, layoffs and downsizings at local dailies are usually followed by similar downsizings at neighboring weeklies, and the pain tends to be a bit more intense. The dailies usually have some kind of standards as to the people they hire, and weeklies are notorious for driving off their most popular (and expensive) contributors in favor of unpaid interns and bloggers who will do anything, and I mean anything, to tell people that they work in journalism.

There's a line in Vanity Fair's article on Microsoft that seems to be fitting for the big O.
"an internal culture that unintentionally rewards managers who strangle innovative ideas that might threaten the established order of things."

Indeed, if you're going to go to a primarily online strategy, the least you can do is make sure your website doesn't suck. There's plenty of local Web talent in these parts that could be tapped to make a truly useful website.

Although, to be fair, it's probably the suits in New Jersey mandating The O use that godawful OregonLive template. It's also probably a corporate mandate to keep OregonLive a separate entity from the newspaper, the reasons for which have never been clear to me.

Newspapers have a definite and simple organization and hierarchy -- the front page, the editorial page, the local section, the arts section, the sports section. Once a day, or once a week, or whenever the paper is published, it's a snapshot of where things stood at deadline time. In contrast, with the web, things change constantly, and readership tends to increase the more the content is revised. The trick is to come up with a reliable organization and hierarchy in that atmosphere. The Newhouses clearly don't have it.

But they really shot themselves in the foot when they decided to have content disappear after 14 days. It will take years to recover from that blunder.

They just revamped the website and the new one is worse.

The O should start charging a fee to publish
press releases that were handed to them (Similar to Obit charges.) We might see less propaganda from government and they could profit by not disclosing "paid advertisement" on their news.

We're not the only ones blessed with this website:

Website layout for a news organization is simple. Have big links that say "Local News" "National News" "Odd Stories" "Sports" etc. Then have each link automatically open as a new tab in the internet browser when it is clicked on. I get to read the sections I want without having to read the boring bits. And each tab is a different "theme" so I know exactly what I'm getting.

That's pretty simple and it would certainly make me happy.

The Oregonian isn't alone in recently "improving" their site and making it worse. The Tribune's upgrade, in my opinion, is just as bad. I've been noticing that the lead post for each main article features a run-on sentence at the beginning.

The NY Times has the best website I've ever found for news. It isn't perfect because the various sections all have different formats, but it is very, very good.

The O's website is a total and complete mess. Whoever is in charge of that pile doesn't even understand the concept of news delivery.

I have no idea how many people it takes to run the NY Times website but I bet it is a big investment. The content changes from moment to moment so they must have a room full of people updating the site. Not sure how they pay for it, but it sure is cool to watch.

Pardon me if I happen to see the irony in the slow motion demise of the "O".

For years, the local "O" Op Ed writers have been heaping their scorn on local industries for not being "green" enough for the "O".

My UNPUBLISHED letters to the editor (and deleted comments) questioned how "green" the single use, plastic wrapped, dead ground up tree, truck distributed, SUV delivered, content thin, lefty leaning, anti business, intern cut and pasted, spoon fed government PIO content of the "O".

The incomplete descriptions of the WHO in their crime reports, would get them a failing grade in any high school journalism class.

I expect a boost in unsolicited phone calls with "special subscription rates" soon.

The mobile version is even worse. No comments and if you click Desktop, it goes back in the main page instead of showing the full version of the current story. Yet if you reach a story that doesn't have a mobile version, it offers to show the full version and doesn't start over at the main page.

The O's website is a total and complete mess. Whoever is in charge of that pile doesn't even understand the concept of news delivery.

Or journalism, for that matter. I believe it's because like many local papers, it has little to do with "news" anymore.

The most annoying tidbit that has not been mentioned yet has to be the cramming of about 5 different articles under 1 heading on the front page, all seemingly disconnected. A good example is something like this:

"N. Alberta Neighbors Stand Against New Festival; Blazer's New Coach Feeling at Home; A Pop Up Food Cart idea; Restaurants Bite Back"

Occasionally they'll end it with something like "ZZZ Roundup" but usually it's just a flustercuck of articles, half of which I have no idea what the story entails just by reading their headline.

The other thing I find annoying is still having links all over the place to the dude who was in the car crash and masturbated afterwards. That happened months ago. Yes, it was weird, but it doesn't merit space in the "recommended" section after this long.

That's OK. TO fill the void, METRO is going to publish a weekly to give their "reporter" something to do.

Enthusiastically second the kent mulder comment about the stupid masturbating driver story. It is so obviously dumb to keep it running I wonder if anyone in top management even reads the on-line paper.
Can't blame them for avoiding it, it is a mess, and we can't blame the local management for that.
But the price is right.

I am moving this Friday. I am having a moving sale for my left over stuff for Saturday and Sunday. I am going to put an ad in Craigslist for free. I figured that I should get more exposure as my sale is really big, huge etc, so I went to the Oregonian website to place an ad. I figured it would cost ten to fifteen bucks. Wrong! Their cheapest ad is $45.00 for four lines. They have to be kidding. No wonder they are loosing advertising revenue. Idiots, they really could make it up in volume, which would be a reason also to sell more papers. Anyway folks, I am moving to Clackamas County zip 97009. We have been fixing up our new home, painting and cleaning etc. We use the Fred Meyer in Sandy. Wow, I am able to purchase Styrofoam cups, spray paint without it being locked up. The Safeway gives out plastic bags. My garbage is picked up every week, and I don’t have to recycle. Gasoline is cheaper too. From now on when I go to the big city, it is going to be Gresham.

I was a little perplexed by the claim that the Oregonian was "once considered one of the nation's best."

Maybe it was, and I'd be interested in hearing reader's opinions to the contrary, but IMO, it certainly must have been some time before the 8 years I've been living here. The Oregonian has always seemed to really be a second-rate rag---I love reading print newspapers and wanted to subscribe after moving here, but changed my mind after a month or two of reading it.

The O has made so many really dumb missteps, it is sad but understandable that it is now a fading rose. When I was a kid, my class went on a field trip to the Oregonian building to see how a paper was made. We saw the drawing table the cartoonist, Art Bimrose, used, the bull pen where the reporters worked, and my favorite- the press room where the pages were composed with the noisy Linotype machine in full operation throwing out lines of lead text, all building to make a paper. A big daily paper with wide circulation that kept thousands of kids on the streets with their bikes early each morning pitching papers onto porches, driveways and roofs. Even collecting money for the papers was a tedious task done by kids that taught business and customer relations skills. Do schools take children on field trips anymore?

The loss is more than physical. Losing our last daily paper means we will lose the strongest link we have to a shared experience of being in this time and place together. I don't think TV or the Internet can do the same. And that is sad.

John Benton, Rock on -- I hope you enjoy your new digs outside of the red zone. =-)

The O's website is a total and complete mess. Whoever is in charge of that pile doesn't even understand the concept of news delivery.

Or journalism, for that matter. I believe it's because like many local papers, it has little to do with "news" anymore.

Remember Jonathan Nicholas? Suspended for a couple of weeks for plagiarism, he went on to become an editor at The Zero. I'll never forget an interview he did, in which he was asked what motivated him to go into journalism. His answer:

"Because I wanted to make a difference."

That, right there, explains why vintage media is crashing, while blogs like Jack's are on the rise.


As a lawyer/blogger, I get
to be a member of:

In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
Marchigüe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Gascón, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
La Antigua Clásico, Rioja 2011
Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
Marchigüe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
Nelms Road, Merlot 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2012
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2013
Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16
Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
Goodfellow, Reserve Pinot Gris, Clover 2014
Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2015
Trader Joe's, Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 2015
La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Kendall-Jackson, Pinot Noir, California 2013
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
Erath, Pinot Noir, Estate Selection 2012
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
Domaines Bunan, Bandol Rose 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
King Estate, Pinot Gris, Backbone 2014
Oberon, Napa Cabernet 2013
Apaltagua, Envero Carmenere Gran Reserva 2013
Chateau des Arnauds, Cuvee des Capucins 2012
Nine Hats, Red 2013
Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
Roxy Ann, Claret 2012
Januik, Merlot 2012
Conundrum, White 2013
St. Francis, Sonoma Cabernet 2012

The Occasional Book

Marc Maron - Waiting for the Punch
Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
Christopher Buckley - Boomsday
Ryan Holiday - The Obstacle is the Way
Ruth Sepetys - Between Shades of Gray
Richard Adams - Watership Down
Claire Vaye Watkins - Gold Fame Citrus
Markus Zusak - I am the Messenger
Anthony Doerr - All the Light We Cannot See
James Joyce - Dubliners
Cheryl Strayed - Torch
William Golding - Lord of the Flies
Saul Bellow - Mister Sammler's Planet
Phil Stanford - White House Call Girl
John Kaplan & Jon R. Waltz - The Trial of Jack Ruby
Kent Haruf - Eventide
David Halberstam - Summer of '49
Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
Maria Dermoȗt - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 5
At this date last year: 3
Total run in 2017: 113
In 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269

Clicky Web Analytics