Tag Archives: Arizona Republic

‘Wall’ of illfame lands Arizona Republic and USA Today a Pulitzer

Funny how much a wall can do – even in its absence. The Pulitzer prize board awarded the Arizona Republic one of the most prestigious journalism awards, for reporting on Trump’s attempt to build that wall. Not one story, it was a series of stories in multi-media – newspaper articles, video, podcasts and even VR.

Here’s the story in VR, in 4 chapters.  And if that’s not enough, it’s the basis of a documentary, The Wall.



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Should web brands reflect the mother ship?

Lots of discussion around the new AZCentral web site. It’s a discussion around whether the new site reflects the newspaper brand. It doesn’t, and I wondered if that was accident or intentional heresy. Take a look at AZCentral. If you’re in Arizona, you probably remember the cluttered site that bore no resemblance to the newspaper it was an extension of — The Arizona Republic.

We all worry about two things when it comes to online presence: Usability and Branding. Often we get all fired up over the latter, and pay lip service to the former.

The rhetorical question I often ask is, does an online product need to reflect the branding of the mothership? And often the answer is, “Yes of course!” But if we probe a bit deeper, we may find that the audience for the online product may be looking for a different experience than the audience of the physical product. Even if some part of the audience patronizes both. Do users walk away from an online experience because it is different from the physical entity? Will a McDonald‘s user walk away from the site because there is no giant golden arch on the landing page? The McDonald’ site is quite plain in comparison to the physical store. Mcdonald’s USA on the other hand is a lot more interactive than its mothership.

If we design web sites based on who our users are, and how they visit us, maybe our online brand deserves its own identity. Ikea is one huge confusing place that encourages people to get lost, and find plants and window drapes when they only came in to buy a ice bucket. But the Ikea site is organized by the way people search, not the way store customers go to get lost. There are just seven tabs for seven rooms, and one more for three others. It’s that simple. The store is supposed to slow down customers. The site is supposed to speed things up. Usability took home the trophy, for a good reason.


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Quotes of the week 09/29/07

“The Internet has so much more potential than that, if only we free ourselves from the idea that it is just another medium for messages, like television, radio and print.”

Tim Manners, in Fast Company. “Socialized Media:” On the problem of marketers attempting to create a medium out of every conceivable space.

“By digitising the whole collection, we give access to the books without the filter of later judgments, whether based on taste or on the economics of printing and publishing”

Dr. Jensen of the British Library, on the news that they will digitise100,000 books from the 19th Century, and one million pages of 18th Century newspapers. These will be text searchable.

“Increasingly social networks are becoming a theater of operations for PR. So we need ways to track our interactions over time.”

Steve Rubel, on using a Gmail account as a social media hub.

“You’ve got people on cell phones, their Blackberries, and iPods while driving. Those are all distractions. Hopefully, when they see a sign they’re not expecting, it might make them stop.”

Mayor of Oak Lawn, Illinois, on putting up double-octagonal stop signs, with the bottom one displaying messages such as “Stop…and smell the roses.”

“There is no better way to keep embarrassing secrets under wraps than to chill those who expose them.”

Editorial in Arizona Republic on the need for AZ Senator Jon Kyl to support the Schumer-Specter bill that going before the US Senate that could protect journalists.

“They don’t want the world to see what is going on there.”

White House spokesman, Scott Stanzel, commenting on Myanmar cutting off Internet access, and hence, news filtering out of the country.

“It’s not a Mona Lisa painting, it’s a car”

US District Court judge, Richard Berman on a ruling that requires New York City cab drivers to install GPS and credit card reader technology in the vehicles. Drivers protested that it would amount to giving away trade secrets.

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Posted by on September 30, 2007 in Disruptive


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