Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â I see the Michigan Daily has a completely new design; all kinds of fancy fonts, etc., and also lots of new features. (I was going to write this post a long while ago–as “Daily gone wild…as usual”, but I’ve now opted for a more conventional name), but have been very busy, and and also can’t find all my notes. –On that note, there may be a “Part II” to this, once I do find the notes.)
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Of course, I have opined a lot about the Daily before (feel free to search Arblogger for linx), but shall avoid too much snarking here.Â Â
. . .On the whole, the changes are positive. I donâ€™t feel any of them were necessary (how â€œnecessaryâ€ are aesthetic things, ever?Â ”Form follows function”, say the utilitarians, and they are often right…), but they do make the paper more interesting. And, of course, some of the changes comprise content, not just style.
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â One of the primary changes/innovations is the “menu” on the second page now, with featuresÂ ”The Extremist”–”Arbor Anecdotes”–”Before You Were Here”–”Campus Characters”–”Explained” appearing in M-Tu-W-Th-F order. The “Arbor Anecdotes” feature provides a nice little series of “Arbor updates”, although a good number of the submissionsÂ seem to come from Daily staff themselves…
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â And sandwiched below those varying daily Daily specialtiesÂ are the “Crime Notes”, “Campus Events & Notes”, and the new “Three Things You Should Know Today” feature. That last one in particular, is it gimmicky? Maybe so. Maybe the whole weekday menu above, “Campus Characters” etc., is gimmicky too in some ways; but that does not mean it’s boring. (The whole page 2 dealÂ is somewhat like what one sees in magazines, the “snippets of interest” format. Fogies might complain about putting that kind of magaziney thing in a venerable paper like the Daily, but whatever keeps readers amused; a student paper can take inspiration from “Cosmo” or “Time” or whatever if it likes. …Has there been a poll about the changes?
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â By way, I do not mind when the Daily takes inspiration from me either, see, e.g., their 10/27/06 From the Daily: Councilman Kunselman, which sounds rather like my own 9/6/06 Ran into Steve â€œeven sounds like Councilmanâ€ Kunselman. Imitation is the sincerest form of flat…..)Â
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â One surgical cut the MDÂ has made, which I doubt the value of, is the “This day in Daily history” feature. It was a little dorky in some ways, maybe, but it did, as per its name,Â show some appreciation for Daily history, and was a nice window into the past. …Also, didn’t the “…years of editorial freedom” part on the front page use to be a nice Michigan blue, at some point? I seem to remember a whole lotta blue on the front page in the past…Â
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â I’m no conservative as a rule, but I wonder how much baby the D threw out with the bath water.
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Now that Karl Stampfl will be taking over and putting his stamp on the MichD, that paper notes, “…Managing Editor Jeffrey Bloomer said Stampfl will put more emphasis on the presentation of the paper’s content than current Editor in Chief Donn M. Fresard did during his tenure.” This mystifies me, since, as we have noted, Fresard made many changes indeed in presentation. One wonders what will happen here. (People do watch the MiDa for what it does, see the curious case of the metamorphosed Michigan Review…)
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Again, I may make more comment later, but there we are for now. Whether you like the paper or not,Â the DailyÂ is too big a fact of life in these parts to walk around and avoid, so may it flourish.