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Associated Press Scrambles to Help Newspapers Stem Decline in Readership

In an effort to help its newspaper clients who are losing readership, the A.P. will begin moving colorful leads that attempt to paint the opening paragraph of their stories with more emotion.

According to the brief write up in today’s NY Times…

“…Mike Silverman, managing editor of the Associated Press, said the optional leads would not be available to various Internet providers and would be reserved instead for the 1,500 daily print newspapers that are members.

‘We have been hearing more and more from our members that they are looking for help for readers who already know what happened,’ he said. He said the concept originated years ago with sports writing, which now assumes that readers know the score and want something extra…”

Seems more like an act of desperation than a workable solution. If people already know what happened, painting the news a different color won’t change the speed by which it was distributed.

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