Letter to our readers: New design shows News' commitment to its readers


Return To Article
  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    March 31, 2011 8:22 a.m.

    Having had a few issues to read now, I appreciate the effort to create an appealing product, but I'm sorry to say the new design falls short. Design is a subjective matter of taste, of course, but the balance of text and white space seems off to me and headlines seem harder to read (or am I aging?). Part of the latter may be the narrower font. Especially in the short news items, where the headlines are set in all caps, a narrow sans serif font is really hard to read and discourages me from reading the article. Interesting how little style choices like font and line spacing can evoke a visceral response in the reader.

    Also, have submissions to the Public Forum fallen off, or is three letters the new norm?

  • Gosh-DUH Burlington, CT
    March 30, 2011 7:21 p.m.

    Comparing the changes in the Deseret News over the last decades is like comparing the articles in the Ensign and other LDS Church publications in 2010-2011 to articles published in the 1980s and 1990s: Lots of color, big fonts, lots of white space, short fluffy stories. In general, the writers must expect the readers of today to be less intellectual than in years past.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    March 30, 2011 9:14 a.m.

    It appears that Inquiring Mom is one of the few who dealt with the substance of the matter.

  • JustGordon Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 29, 2011 2:41 p.m.

    Gosh my first set comments were not approved and I didn't use bad language, caps or name anybody specific.

    The D News is hardly liberal, although some in Utah may not feel that it is conservative enough.

    I used to take the D News and loved reading it. What disappoints me is that now with so many of its professional reporters let go, the resulting effort has been less than distinguished.

    Too often these "reporters" are have significant biases that make what they write suspect. Instead we have corporate and institutional opinion that is presented as news.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 29, 2011 9:46 a.m.

    The new format (and contents) are very much like the ink smeared newsprint sold at USA Today. Lots of color, big fonts, lots of white space, short fluffy stories, and little real news beyond a few sound bites.

    That may be a very trendy format popular with other newspapers, but they are mostly facing declining circulation, and what they see as a solution may actually be contributing to their demise.

    As for the USA Today- when I get one at hotels in my travels, I do not even bother picking it up to toss it in the trash.

    Please don't let the Deseret News become useless like USA Today- return to solid reporting, insightful stories etc.

    Newspapers can no longer compete as a source of timely "news" but can only distinguish themselves from the broadcast media by delivering in depth content beyond what is found in a radio newscast, or typical national 30 minute news segment, or even on the cable news channels.

  • tom_e Kaysville, UT
    March 29, 2011 6:33 a.m.

    I have become a speed reader. Years ago it took a least an hour to read the Deseret News. Now I can do it in ten minutes.

  • green_earth Rexburg, ID
    March 28, 2011 11:32 p.m.

    I've been exposed to the DNews my whole life, having grown up in Salt Lake. So I, too, have nostalgic feelings for it.

    I'm surprised at the theme in many of these comments. First off, it is a business like any under, forced to adjust to a market that is not just different, it's a market that does not even resemble what existed as recently as 15 years ago. Those in charge of making a profit at the DNews MUST adjust and attempt to stay in front of market trends. We can criticize their decisions, as many have, but we have an alternative: the death of DNews.

    Which leads me to my second point: just because the parent owner of the newspaper is the LDS Church does not remove it from normal market realities. It is a for-profit business! Believe it or not, the LDS Church's for-profit business are expected to make money, pay taxes, and operate like any other for-profit corporation in this country. It is not an LDS Church publication like the Church News. If it can't make a profit, it will go away.

  • Inquiring Mom Spanish Fork, UT
    March 28, 2011 10:26 p.m.

    I really enjoyed the new layout in today's print edition of the paper. It's a refreshing change. I'm glad some of the columnists had updated photos--some of the headshots seemed very dated. Overall, great job on the simple yet noticeable changes!

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 28, 2011 4:16 p.m.

    Though I disagree that the DMN is "Liberal" in the least ... I also don't think you can make the assumption that anybody who is taken aback by liberal positions taken in DMN editorials... is only talking about Illegal Immigration. They could be referring to other things. That's just one hot-button topic. There are others.

    And we don't have to believe one extreme or the other. It doesn't have to be either Amnesty OR Box Cars. There is a lot of room in between.

    We need to quit just ASSUMING anybody who doesn't agree with your position automatically believes the OPPOSITE extreme. It's LAME!

    Comment on what people have ACTUALLY said... not what you ASSUME they believe!

    Then... we can have a conversation that makes some rational sense.

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
    March 28, 2011 3:54 p.m.

    Are the same people calling the paper Liberal for editorial about supporting the Utah Compact the liberalization of the paper? If so, then you are saying the LDS Church First Presidency, who support the Utah Compact, are liberals. I hardly think that is the case with either.

  • southmtnman Provo, UT
    March 28, 2011 3:32 p.m.


    We have some boxcars. Is that really an option? Lets look into it!

  • DonO Draper, UT
    March 28, 2011 3:22 p.m.

    I suspect the comment about the paper's liberalism comes from one of the "put 'em on boxcars and ship 'em out" anti-immigration crowd. Anyone who thinks the D News is "left-leaning" needs serious adjustment. Further, you have to agree that the paper has never been anything more or less than it has purported to be. Disagree with its editorial position(s)and/or its new design if you wish but you'll always know where it's coming from. And that's somewhat comforting...whether or not you agree with it.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 28, 2011 2:38 p.m.

    To survive... the DMN (like every other company that wants to survive)... has to learn to do more with less. They aren't like the government. They can't run a deficit long term.

    JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt | 10:00 a.m. is wrong... they DO have the same economic pressure as other businesses.

    These corporations are separate from the church (how they are incorporated, funded, etc). They are prevented by law from receive tithing funds. Tithing funds are totally separate from the corporate side of things.

    Just like any other news company... The DNB has to make a profit, or be sold, or liquidated. That's why they had the layoffs awhile back.

    Don't worry... NONE of your tithing goes to the corporate side of things. And none of the profits from these companies gets co-mingled with tithing or what tithing is meant to be used for. They are by law totally separate (financially).

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
    March 28, 2011 1:50 p.m.

    How about the Deseret News show commitment by hiring back all the people you let go in this bad economy?

    I don't much care for the pretty talking heads that contribute nothing to the newspaper itself. It is a poor excuse for journalism when you use these TV sound bite people who scrape up just enough info to sound like they know what they are talking about.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    March 28, 2011 1:18 p.m.

    Contrary to the claims of some people I have not seen significant changes in the content of the Deseret News over the last few months, other than a broadening of the editorial views expressed.

    The creation of the faith section and the family section are good innovations. Carol Makita, who used to work exclusively with KSL, has provided excellent articles.

    Newspapers need to change to survive. I would also point out that the Deseret News is not in bankruptcy, unlike the other major newspaper published in Salt Lake City. Lastly, the Deseret News is operated by the LDS Church as a for proffit enterprise. If the Church sunk money into it people would complain about unfair competition against other media outlets. The Deseret News seeks to turn a profit.

  • wrostow Salt Lake City, UT
    March 28, 2011 12:48 p.m.

    The readers from CA and NJ are exactly right. Thanks to Clark Gilbert and his decision to slash half his staff, the DNews is a shell of what it once was. You can try to gussy up that shell all you want but it will never replace real journalism done by real journalists. A newspaper is defined by its news. So if you're not willing to invest in a newsroom, you really don't have a newspaper. In that sense, the DNews already has failed. It is very sad.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 28, 2011 12:28 p.m.

    Chris T | 10:56 a.m.

    I hope you're right about the DMN not failing... I like having it around.

    I firmly believe we are better off having MORE media outlets... not consolidating the media into one huge government supporting media super-power (ala provda).

  • Everest American Fork, UT
    March 28, 2011 12:26 p.m.

    How would those people in New Jersey or California know anything about the new design of the print paper? Did they get a copy overnighted via fedex?

  • Richard Larson Holladay, ut
    March 28, 2011 11:52 a.m.

    Give us the option to self-edit our posts before submitting!

  • Richard Larson Holladay, ut
    March 28, 2011 11:49 a.m.

    The next step should be easing the heavy hand of "standards & practices"
    (the d.n.censorship board)!

  • Chris T Salt Lake City, Utah
    March 28, 2011 10:56 a.m.

    I'm just glad we still have the Deseret News. Other papers have failed, this one won't.

  • dave Park City, UT
    March 28, 2011 10:33 a.m.

    DN Subscriber | 8:13 a.m. March 28, 2011

    I have been reading the DN for the 28 years I have lived in Utah. The DN is not leaning left, the extreme right is leaning further right. From that prospective, anything pragmatic, educated or statesmanlike is seen as left leaning.

    Like Reagan said about the democratic party. I did not leave the party, the party left me.

  • Michael De Groote
    March 28, 2011 10:31 a.m.

    I think the new design looks great. Way to go graphic design department and anybody else who worked on it. You rock!

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
    March 28, 2011 10:00 a.m.

    "On the other hand | 8:40 a.m. March 28, 2011
    Spanish Fork, UT
    Capitalism at work, folks."

    Uh, you do know who owns the Deseret News don't you? The Deseret News is privately owned by the LDS Church and in turn does not have the same economic pressure as other businesses. Cutting the staff was a huge mistake. The quality has gone way down with the addition of the sound bite tv people.

  • dalefarr South Jordan, Utah
    March 28, 2011 8:52 a.m.

    I'm too old fashioned. I still wish the Deseret News was managed and written by journalists with journalism's values.

  • On the other hand Spanish Fork, UT
    March 28, 2011 8:40 a.m.

    Capitalism at work, folks.

    Best wishes to the Deseret News.

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
    March 28, 2011 8:27 a.m.

    You can make it look pretty but getting rid of so much of your experienced staff was a huge mistake.

  • yarrlydarb Ogden, UT
    March 28, 2011 8:19 a.m.

    Sorry, I read the DNews most everyday, but I really hadn't noticed any significant change.

    Like I say, sorry.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 28, 2011 8:13 a.m.

    While the cosmetic changes are probably an improvement, the steady shift to the left of the Deseret News' editorial positions and reporting are major negative factors which cause me to question why I bother to subscribe to the print edition at all.

    There are many choices for readers who want a left leaning paper, both national and even here in Utah, but few that are objective reporters with conservative editorial views. The former are losing readers at an astonishing rate. Why be one of many failing papers when you could take the road less traveled in the media world and possibly capture the loyal business of conservatives, as in the case of Fox News which is thriving while other cable news outlets are not.

  • John Charity Spring Alloway, NJ
    March 28, 2011 8:01 a.m.

    This is truly a sad day for long time readers of the Deseret News. Indeed, we have lost something special.

    Thomas F. Meagher once said that "The greatest tragedy that could occur in this modern age would be for style to triumph over substance." The new format changes in this paper represent just that--style over substance.

    By its own admissions in this article, the paper is removing substantive content in order to make it easier for less educated readers to read. Newspapers should lift readers up, not go down to their level.