I know it’s only the first day, but in the spirit of constructive criticism …
1. It’s not very newsy. There was nothing I didn’t read in my morning paper or on the website prior to noon. I realize I’m a high-info guy, but it just didn’t feel urgent or timely enough. This doesn’t underscore a commitment to newsgathering.
2. It’s long. If high-info folks like me aren’t the point, will mediums-to-lows stay still through a 7:18 video? In Internet time, that’s awhile. Remember, the average user is on the Strib’s website 30 minutes per month.
3. You gotta love Lileks. I mean that literally, for he dominates the proceedings. My admiration for James’ web skills knows no bounds, and the guy is Internet gold in his many incarnations. Still, I’ve long thought TV was his worst medium; he’s a natural show-off, but video amps that up. The whole enterprise seems more about him than it should be.
4. Short fun is better than belabored shtick. My favorite moment came when someone darted on screen holding a Minnesota map to demonstrate which fish houses needed to be taken out. It wasn’t strained like the (hackneyed) lottery bit. More importantly, it got the information across more effectively than in print or on the web. The Twins “prancing” video was also fun.
5. The promos — oy! The inaugural webcast’s “commercial breaks” promote the home team — in the cheesiest possible manner. Aping TV’s saccharine approach, we get new Strib columnists Gail Rosenblum and Jon Tevlin in an antiseptic corporate setting with somewhat antiseptic talking points. It’s stagy and undersells any definable genuineness these people have. The paper in general suffers from this; for God’s sake, don’t underscore it with your “new media.”