I hadn’t been in a big Denver newsroom in a while, and felt a little nostalgic while visiting tech reporter Andy Vuong at the Post’s offices this week. After our team debriefed him on a client’s pending product launch, Andy was kind enough to give us a quick tour of the ‘ol newsroom. Though not really that old – the shiny new “joint operating agreement” building went up not even ten years ago – it stands as a brick and mortar monument to a short-sighted newspaper industry that once lived in two-newspaper towns and that the Internet hadn’t eaten for lunch yet.
In spite of this, it was exhilarating to see the newsroom still humming. No more cacophony of manual typewriters echoing around the huge, smoke-filled room that I remember from when my dad worked there, but still there were the busy beat reporters, sternly staring down their screens, hustling toward deadlines. Each section – News, Sports, Business, Features – staked out within their designated territories, and the morning Editorial Meeting in session in the classic style: a team of editors parsing and prioritizing the day’s events.
A couple of Pulitzer Prizes in the lobby spoke to the glory of journalism, memorialized here in the Post’s hallowed halls, quieter than in the old days perhaps, but still cranking away. Both prizes were won by people I knew and worked with, cartoonist Pat Oliphant and photographer Tony Suau. Other familiar relics displayed about connected me to old friends, journalists who made their mark, and epic moments that made the front page and impacted our lives.
There’s only one big metro daily in Denver, and it was fun to see it alive and kicking. It’s still producing much of news that we all consume, every day and by professionals like Andy, specializing in one of the many beats that feed the diverse interests of our own Metropolitan Statistical Area and beyond.
Though the “paper” part of the newspaper may be dying, and is already dead in many cases, the digital delivery of the editorial product I grew up with, and that we still work with on a thousand levels today, isn’t going away.