Daily Archives: December 27, 2012

UPDATE: “Thanks for your help,” writes Gil Duran. “And on the sixth day, Fox corrected the story.”

—— reported last week that California’s 2012 budget deficit is projected to hit $28 billion.

“Completely false,” writes Gil Duran, Gov. Jerry Brown’s press secretary. “The error was actually pointed out to me by a reporter who thought it was a pretty shocking mistake.”

Duran tells Romenesko readers:

I wrote a request for a correction. Ignored.Unknown So it appears I’m going to have to campaign for a correction. Most news outlets are more than happy to correct an egregious error. Not Fox News, apparently. I’m not surprised by most of what they do. But — come on — you can’t just write fiction. I’m used to their relentless attacks and we generally ignore them … falsehoods are another matter!

Read Duran’s emails to Fox News after the jump. Read More

Reformer executive editor Tom D’Errico writes in an email: “Terrible terrible typo. The night crew was short-staffed and we had an unusual last-minute early deadline with the storm marching in. I’ve been meaning to address the issue on my blog but have had a busy day.”

UPDATE: The editor’s blog post is up. He writes: “When I sat down to craft this blog [about the headline screw-up], I kept running over the reasons in my mind (which I’ll share in a moment) of how or why a mistake like this can and does happen. But everything just sounded like an excuse. And the truth is: There is no excuse.”

* The Reformer “has a history of making unfortunate typos” (
* “Let is snow” (the headline screw-up edition) (

New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson tells her staff that the paper’s “Snow Fall” interactive feature received around 2.9 million visits for more than 3.5 million page views. “At its peak, as many as 22,000 users visited Snow Fall at any given time,” she writes. “Strikingly, a quarter to a third of them were new visitors to …Rarely have we been able to create a compelling destination outside the home page that was so engaging in such a short period of time on the Web.”

Her Dec. 26 memo:


“Snow Fall: The Avalanche at Tunnel Creek” marked a cool moment in the evolution of our online storytelling.

snow“Beautiful” and “brilliant” were two words used an awful lot by readers and rivals both.

The story was born in the gifted hands of John Branch. The Sports and Graphics desks soon saw story-telling opportunities well beyond the print paper. Ultimately, the effort came to include the talents of Ruth Fremson, Jacky Myint, Hannah Fairfield, Joe Ward, Jeremy White, Xaquin G.V., Graham Roberts, Josh Williams, Wayne Kamidoi, Sam Manchester, Ken Plutnicki, Michael Roston and Lexi Mainland.

All that work produced a wildly new reading experience.

There are, of course, many ways to appreciate Snow Fall’s success and the lessons it might hold. Those behind the effort will soon put together a brown bag lunch for anyone interested in hearing how it came to be and why it stood out.

But some numbers and notions worth enjoying and considering in the meantime:

Ian Fisher noted with a smile after the preview for the project began rocketing around the Internet that, “Snow Fall handily triumphed in a category we never anticipated existing: most hits for a story that didn’t appear on our web site.”

More customary measures included these:

– The project was shared by more than 10,000 users on Twitter.

– It received around 2.9 million visits – some users coming back more than once – for more than 3.5 million page views. A huge portion of the traffic was from social media, and many of those visits came before the project was featured on the home page. The elegant home page design continued to attract our most loyal and engaged users.

– At its peak, as many as 22,000 users visited Snow Fall at any given time. Strikingly, a quarter to a third of them were new visitors to They were quickly hooked: users spent around 12 minutes, often more, engaged with the project.

– More than half a million visits went directly to Snow Fall, and more than half of those direct visits were from new Times users (or readers who hadn’t visited the site in a long while) lured to our journalism by this feature.

In sum, then, people heard that The Times was doing something neat; they came in droves; and they stuck around for a while. We succeeded in creating a destination online that only increased in popularity when we put it on our home page. The Times is a premier online destination for news and information, but rarely have we been able to create a compelling destination outside the home page that was so engaging in such a short period of time on the Web.


Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz announced Wednesday that baristas in his D.C.-area stores will write “Come Together” on cups to encourage compromise “to solve the tremendously important, time-sensitive issue to fix the national debt.” (Gawker calls this “the year’s most insipid political gesture.”)
AOL’s Patch says it’s supporting Schultz’s effort “through blog posts, social media, online and offline ads and other editorial content across many of our local sites.”

Patch CEO Jon Brod writes in a memo to employees:

We expect this to be the first in a series of Patch and Starbucks initiatives giving consumers the opportunity to write messages and create drawings on Starbucks cups to express their opinions on significant topics facing our country.

Read the Patch memo after the jump. Read More

Matt Brown, news director at Tulsa’s Fox23, tells me the snot typo was up for about 10 seconds during Wednesday’s noon newscast. (h/t @MichaelMaze)