Thursday, November 08, 2012

Anchorage Daily News Map Gives Alaska To Obama

Imagine my surprise when I looked at the newspaper yesterday morning.  I knew that Obama had taken most of the swing states, but I hadn't realized that my RED state had gone for Obama too.

From Alaska Daily News Front Page Nov. 7, 2012
I know newspapers are under the gun these days.  And the map is from the McClatchy mothership.  But still.  This isn't a minor typo.  I have my own share of those, sometimes even in the title.  I know it's hard.  But this is not a misspelled word hidden in a paragraph.  It's not even a verbal mistake.  It's visual.

This is the biggest state in the country, off to the side in the lower left of the US map.  In BLUE.

This one is hard to miss.  Maybe all this is being done by computers now, and they aren't programmed to think "Alaska can't be blue."   Or if it was a human, maybe the person can't distinguish certain colors, like blue.  But I can't imagine anyone - especially someone working for the newspaper - who wouldn't notice if Alaska went Democratic.

So, am I being a jerk here for pointing out mistakes at the ADN?  I hope they don't take it that way.  When I (and other Alaskan bloggers) started out, we liked to poke fun at the ADN if we found mistakes or if we beat them to an important story.  It got a little heated when the ADN sent cease and desist letters to bloggers using their photos.  Particularly so when the ADN started putting up our photos without permission.

But the ADN played a big role in supporting this blog in the beginning.  They put links to my coverage of the political corruption trials and most generously, they included this blog when they got the court to allow journalists to take their computers into the courtroom and in sharing the audio and video tapes of the trial.  Their reporters and columnists were very kind and helpful in guiding me through some of the basics of journalism.

So, I think of this as a friendly jab - something fans of rival sporting teams might do.  Something the Alaska Ear does every Sunday.

Having a newspaper that covers local and state issues is important.  Bloggers can do good stuff, but there really needs to be a full, paid staff of professional reporters monitoring all that's going on.  So this is a friendly razz.  But more seriously, bloggers and mainstream reporters report other people's errors all the time, so it doesn't hurt if ours are called out now and then so we know how it feels.  And if they know someone is still reading the newspaper and might point out their mistakes, maybe they'll be a little more careful. 

Do you think anyone was fooled by the blue Alaska? 


  1. No. But how times are a'changin' ... know hope.
    (maybe this typo was wishful thinking...?)

    The fridge at Palins' house must be well and truly pock-marked today.

  2. Sixteen states did have a higher percentage of voters for Romney than did Alaska.


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