‘Metro Section on Prozac’: Stribber questions paper’s priorities

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Setting news priorities can be tough—how do you allocate limited space between news of a proposed foreclosure freeze in Minneapolis and an announcement of new snow emergency procedures in Edina? The Strib went with snow emergencies.

Steve Brandt, a veteran reporter at the Star Tribune, has offered more than a few pointed opinions on how the paper is being run today. And on the Minneapolis Issues e-democracy forum on Friday, he offered another, this time on the paper’s prioritizing of coverage. Titled “The Star Trib Metro Section on Prozac,” he wrote:

Of course today, we neglected to run a story that had been written to tell people in Minneapolis (pop. +/-382,000) that a foreclosure freeze had been proposed in their city, where foreclosures have been averaging four per day. BUT we did manage to find room to tell Edinans (pop. +/-47,000) that they’ll get notice of snow emergencies faster. Sheesh.

Foreclosures in the area have attracted attention nationwide; on Thursday, the Wall Street Journal noted that last year’s 3,000+ home foreclosures in Hennepin County nearly doubled the previous year’s count. It quoted Amber Hawkins of the Foreclosure Relief Law Project in St. Paul: “You just wouldn’t believe it here. There are areas of [North Minneapolis] that are just decimated. House after house is boarded, vacant and abandoned.”