Nothing new in the Star

Dateline: Wed 30 Jun 2010

The revamped Indianapolis Star, while pleasing to me, is a rehash of what was in there before Gannett stripped the paper to its bones -- in other words, a Living section (albeit, still with no real stories -- Mrs. Daniels Q and A? Puh-leeze); a biz section, yawn; and the feature "A Life Lived," about dead people, which both Marcella Fleming and David Mannweiler wrote back in the day.

Anybody else underrwhelmed?


Seneca [unverified] said:

Very underwhelmed.

With the elimination of the daily TV grids, two pages have been removed.

All the changes from the time of Gannett's takeover have been cosmetic, with the result of taking away, reducing, diminishing.

The "Extra" section is now 4 pages. There is still that one page of comics sometimes printed in color, sometimes not; so far this week, that page has been printed in grayscale 2 days running. "Extra" would seem to be the next candidate for elimination.

2010-06-30 10:44:05

Whitebeard [unverified] said:

I agree with Seneca.

It's amazing to me how little time it takes for me to read the entire paper. And I have vision disability.

It used to take me half the day to read The Star on Sundays - now, I'm finished with it in an hour or so (or less).

More revamping, but no more to read.

Also, what's up with all of these puff pieces on local movers-and-shakers and local celebrities? These articles appear to be written by public relations agencies.

Borrowing from those old "Police Squad" movies: "Okay folks, no journalism to see here; please move along."

2010-06-30 13:24:37

Tell The Truth [Member] said:

The puff pieces ignore salient facts otherwise available on multiple police blogsheets. And publicly known or gossiped. It's gotten just ridiculous.

Myra must be buzzing overtime. It's never been easier to get her clients some ink. Hell it's more difficult for her to get a client placed in Nuvo. At least they ask some relevant questions about the subject's, uh, credibility.

I don't give one whit about TV listings. Sorry, Seneca, I just don't care. The Sunday paper has those, and I save it all week. The newspaper chieftains make me pay for an obit that lists more than dad's date of death. Half their copy editors don't own an AP Stylebook and think anything is made plural by adding an apostrophe and an "s." I want current NEWS. And more decent local photos. The newspaper is becoming irrelevant.

Which forces the internal argument--do I hasten its demise by refusing to buy it?

So far, the daily cost is small enough to justify its place in my budget--but the margin between that cost and my acceptance, is razor-thin these days. Not much more room for error.

And when that margin is gone, I'll be one more reason print media is in a state of decline. I'll have this odd argument with myself, and I'm not sure which voice in my head will win.

Gannett is no more or less guilty than any of the other news titans these days. A pox on all of them. Their demise corresponds with the language's decline. Just pathetic.

2010-07-01 03:53:14

Tom Greenacres [unverified] said:

The New Star has more, bigger pictures and fewer words.

Depressingly fitting, even prophetic.

2010-07-01 06:48:13

mlw [Member] said:

I just heard my father rolling over in his grave...

2010-07-01 07:00:10

hendy [Member] said:

Did no one doubt the Gannett disease would infect the dregs of the Pulliam empire? I wish there was news in no news... but there is no mystery here as to cause and effect.

I'm guessing that this dysentery-like disease will eventually run its course. Blame throwing for reduced numbers, website re-do cycles (hopefully with several CMS systems that are better; can't get much worse), and many cases of lipstick won't make the pig any prettier.

Self-congratulatory backslapping is perhaps the first signs of the decay of a monopoly. They seem to do this with increasing fervor.

Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

2010-07-01 11:07:52

Roberta X [unverified] said:

Tell The Truth: shouldn't that be "NEW'S?"

As one of the Sorta Unwashed, traditionally I read the front page, the Editorial page and the comics, period. Under Gannett, the first is weak at best (the "New Laws" piece recently actually encouraged the commission of felonies by claiming "gun owners" could have their firearms at locked in their cars at work; try that with a handgun but without a carry permit and watch what happens if you get caught), the second is rudderless and vapid and the third.... It's been downhill ever since "The Phantom" vanished.

But, oooo, color photos ("photo's," Mr. G?). Way better than Actual Content and let's see 'em get *that* on the Web-- Oh.

2010-07-02 22:11:08

Tell The Truth [Member] said:

LOL Roberta. You're right, of course. New's is the elixir of today's copy editor's.

2010-07-03 06:11:20

Whitebeard [unverified] said:

"Gannett is no more or less guilty than any of the other news titans these days. A pox on all of them. Their demise corresponds with the language's decline. Just pathetic."

TTT is, in my opinion, right on the money with the above observation. The butchering of the language in this era - often by people who possess university degrees - is often startling to me. And very disturbing.

2010-07-04 14:05:26

Marycatherine Barton [unverified] said:

And regarding being underwhelmed by the newspaper industry in general, Andrew Sullivan is, to the point that he entitled his latest piece, "US Press, from Watchdog to Lapdog". I read him on line, at

2010-07-05 01:20:37

Tom Greenacres [unverified] said:

Nancy Nall's blogsite ( remarks on the misuse of words, notably "garnisheed" which means to attach wages, and "garnished" meaning to decorate with lettuce; the latter has come into common (mis)use to mean attaching wages. And it's editors, writers and talking heads who commonly do this- people who should Know Better..

I shift into high dudgeon over "hypothetical" being used as a noun.

2010-07-05 09:22:03

Marion Garmel [unverified] said:

sorry to be so late weighing in. underwhelmed? that's an understatement. Everything that is new is old again. The News had a Thursday evening entertainment section called Free Time, which I edited, before The News was merged into the Star, and snuffed out. The Star had "Weekend," edited by Rita Rose. They both had stand-alone TV books to be kept for the whole week, but daily logs in the daily papers too. The Star keeps getting skinnierl I am waiting for it to waste away.

2010-07-05 17:04:11

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