Thursday, November 11, 2010

Local news, ChronBlog style.

It's bad enough they didn't think to look for themselves.....

(Image captured from front page of ChronBlog, Thursday, November 11, 2010 @ approx. 10:30 AM.)

Note the highlighted headline: "Web site claims to have key docs on UH strategy to KTRU deal:. At the time, clicking the link (now gone) immediately directed the interested reader to the original story at Texas Watchdog.

Let me make sure I get this straight: A local watchdog news organization does original reporting on something that ChronBlog should have thought of (pertaining to the sale of KTRU, a reasonably big story locally), ChronBlog then links directly to their piece (possibly giving the false impression that Texas Watchdog and ChronBlog are somehow related) all while questioning the legitimacy of the story through a stand-offish headline.

Did I leave anything out? (Other than the obvious "What the hell were they thinking?" question that is.)


  1. What were we thinking?

    Texas Watchdog did some good original reporting, and we linked to it for a few hours from our homepage. It's also linked up in our Twitter stream at

    We did not intend to give the impression that and Texas Watchdog are related, nor be stand-offish in our headline.

    -- Dean Betz, content director,

  2. To be fair to the Chron, we were having problems getting copies of the U of H emails into our system, so we went ahead and published this morning without linking to those emails. Essentially, because we did not showcase the emails we were resting our story on, the Chron editors were well within their rights to use "claimed" in the headline.

    The problem has been solved and we are going to be posting them soon, however.

    Thanks for your eagle eye, Cory, as I missed the Chron link to us this morning.

  3. ** We did not intend to give the impression that and Texas Watchdog are related, nor be stand-offish in our headline. **

    On the latter.... it did kind of come off that way, regardless of intent. Headline writing is tricky that way. A single verb or noun conveys a great deal of meaning.

    On the former.... maybe it would be useful to indicate when a link is to external content, much like academics cite references parenthetically? Kudos to for linking external sites from the front, though. It would be good if the old MSM "our site as final/only destination for news" mentality would finally be put in the grave.


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