Analyzing a story about the Opening Ceremony

With the 2010 Winter Olympics under way, we are no doubt in the next two weeks going to see many news stories about them.  This morning I read this The New York Times story about yesterday’s Opening Ceremony and fatal luge crash.

I like how the story is able to reflect both moods during the ceremony: the somber mood during the parts that involved Nodar Kumaritashvili and the Georgian national team and the celebratory mood for the rest of the ceremony’s proceedings.

I think the story had a very good first few grafs, even though the beginning is not the necessarily the type we’ve learned in class.  The story has a brief, brilliant lead that hints toward what’s to come in the story.  However, there’s no nut graf that follows.  I’ve noticed this with a lot of the Times‘ stories.  Often times its stories will feature a lengthy lead that, in a sense, could work as the nut graf.

The story also has proper balance.  It discusses some of the highlights of last night’s events, but still keeps its focus directed on Kumaritashvili, whose crash was obviously the biggest Olympic story yesterday, and the Georgian delegation.  The reporter also utilizes the right quotes from the right people, including the IOC president Jacques Rogge (who was visibly shaken in his press conference yesterday), the Vancouver Games’ chief executive and Vice President Biden, who represented the US in the heads of state congregation.

I would assume the reporter who wrote this story was originally assigned to cover the highlights Opening Ceremony.  I think she did well in adjusting her focus after an unthinkable event occurred.  After reading the Harrower book, I would imagine that there was a lot of consultation with and guidance from her editor before the Opening Ceremony began.

The story also has a good ending.  It gives a finished feeling to it and provides closure.  This is different from the majority of news stories that just abruptly end.

About Sawley

Tortured but loyal fan of the Golden State Warriors, Oakland Raiders, Oakland A's, San Jose Sharks, Oregon Ducks and Chelsea FC. Life's easier with the R. Kelly Pandora station.
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