For this cross platform project, I chose Meredith Corporation because they had a wide range of magazines to chose from for a print platform and they also have many broadcast stations around the country that give a variety of different perspectives through their programs and their websites. I chose for both the digital platform and for the broadcast platform WSMV Channel 4 in Nashville, Tennessee. With these three platforms, I believe I will be able to compare them to other related media platforms and how the differ or stand out from the rest.
- Better Home and Gardens: Better Homes and Gardens is a magazine owned by Meredith Company that excels in home crafting and baking. The entire magazine is filled with ideas on new dishes and decorating schemes for a home. In this edition, because of the holiday season, it is filled with festive recipes and easy home décor that can be made in a short amount of time. Its content is appropriate for the time of the year.
- WSMV Broadcast: The NBC affiliate WSMV in Nashville really focuses on local news content. They excel in sharing stories that are happening around town and even have a small segment called “Channel 4 Surprise Squad” that helps out people in need and interviews them so people in the area get to know their community.
- WSMV Website: The website for the broadcast station has no shortage of stories and information for their viewers. The website is filled with articles, videos and pictures that people can click on and read about the top stories that are going on for the day. The website has categories that are separated out nicely so it’s easy to find what you are looking for. However, since the major forest fire in Tennessee broke out, I found a lack of coverage on their website and I feel that should be the first thing I see.
- Better Homes and Gardens: As a magazine, articles are always short and filled with images to keep the reader’s attention. It was difficult to find an article to really critique because they were all so short as expected. I ended up choosing an article that was about a woman name Athena Calderone. In a one-page article, this woman was giving tips for other women who like to host parties but have little time to get ready. The article was laid out with images on the right of the page and text on the left that surrounded a picture of Athena herself in the middle. I thought the article was easy to look at fun to follow because it was all in the perspective of Athena.
- WSMV Broadcast: There was a package in their newscast that talked about Black Friday but from a different perspective. They chose to interview police and talk about the security aspects that go into Black Friday and not just the shopping part. I really enjoyed this package because it gave a different perspective on the iconic shopping day and how people should be aware of their items that they purchase and be aware of their surroundings.
- WSMV Website: I found a story in their political section about a district attorney explaining sexual assault and the importance of reporting it as soon as it happens. This story came out a few weeks before the presidential election back in November had taken place and was timed out well because this was around the time Donald Trump had made his inappropriate comments towards women. It was a short article and there was video attached so people could view this information in another form. However, I didn’t like that the featured content on the bottom had a story that was completely unrelated to the article itself.
Composition, Design, and Display
- Better Homes and Gardens: As a magazine, it’s pretty much what you would expect. It’s incredibly busy and full of pictures, articles, and ads. Magazines always tend to have more of a visual impact on their audience than textual information. Magazines like this are meant for quick reads and to pick up when you’re relaxing. You’re not going to get and newsworthy information rather information that is just fun to know.
- WSMV Broadcast: The newscast for WSMV is very clean. When watching packages, lower thirds are easy to read and very clear. Some news stations make lower thirds tight and hard to look at. Their information is laid out clearly and has little to no jargon to confuse their audience.
- WSMV Website: Their website is a mess. Organizational wise, it’s relatively easy to navigate but it’s content is all laid out very tightly with little to no exact rhyme or reason as to why it is there. The home page has a lot of titles with no imagery connected to it which makes this website very confusing.
- Better Homes and Gardens: An editorial challenge that this magazine, and all other magazines, has to deal with are the ads that are pretty much the main focus of the magazine. The company needs these ads in order to support their product. Some ads that I find to be incredibly obnoxious are the ones that are for medication. With these ads, they are two to three pages long. That’s understandable because on the last pages include all the information that could be a risk to the person taking the medication. But how necessary is that to have unless you are actually taking that medicine.
- WSMV Broadcast: The editorial challenges that I think this news station might have are finding the right balance of news worthy information and entertainment news. Nashville is an important place for big names. There is even a tab on their website for entertainment purposes. This has to be properly balanced out when delivering content.
- WSMV Website: The website has many challenges on hand that include organizational challenges and content challenges. This website also contains ads that are incredibly distracting to the viewer and on top of that the layout of the website is awful. If I were to live in this area and the were my news station, I would not go to their website if I missed anything about the news.