Another roundup of NewsOK.com and the happenings on our site this week.
- We’re almost all the way to mid-January (and we might be all the way there, depending on when you read this), so this is my last opportunity to encourage you to visit our 2010 Year in Review page. This page is simple. It’s the top 25 articles that were viewed on NewsOK in 2010 — the good, the bad and the ugly. Don’t look at us. You guys clicked on them. Actually, it’s a a pretty good cross-section of what our readers tend to click on. And the commentary from web editor Nick Tankersley, who put together this page, is quite entertaining at times.
- Bob Przybylo’s blog post on Monday was interesting to me because he featured the progress of the Edmond North boys basketball team under new head coach Jeff Tanner after a tough loss to Norman. Said Tanner: “We have to get tired of having these results. Norman played like a team that was tired of losing. Our energy and our focus has to be there every game.” I took particular interest in this post because coach Tanner is new to my neighborhood in Edmond, and his family is a great addition to our block. We wish him and his team very well. But that’s my personal interest. You should take interest in this post because it highlights the depth of coverage the Bob and the rest of the NewsOK Varsity coverage team offers with its constant blog posts, Twitter streams and article updates on the site. Varsity is the absolute best and most comprehensive coverage of high school sports anywhere. It’s not even close. We’re very proud of our high school coverage.
- Our photography department put together three really interesting slideshows this week. The first was posted to NewsOK after Mary Fallin’s inauguration. The second was a photographic story about the Rocktown ice-climbing wall this winter (I’ll just look at the pictures and leave it to others to experience it firsthand). The third was a nice story about Julie Adams, who is juggling life as a young mother while finishing high school at Emerson High School.
- We have a whole page of slideshows, and we archive them going back to when we first started these. It’s just another example of great story-telling on NewsOK.
- The saga of the Bethany man who was arrested and charged in the stabbing death of his wife topped our article traffic this week. This is my cue to say again … you can’t make this stuff up.
- Oklahoma State football fans got some good news this week, when Justin Blackmon and Brandon Weeden both announced that they would play at OSU next season instead of declaring themselves eligible for the NFL Draft. The video of their announcement was our top video on the site this week:
- We launched a new ongoing coverage page this week to house all the content related to the 2010 U.S. Census. We have all of our stories that analyze the census data, plus a pretty cool map of Oklahoma’s foreign-born residents broken down by county. Another really cool item to digest if you have a free afternoon is the New York Times’ interactive map breaking down every city and every block in the United States. It is one impressive map. So impressive, in fact, that we insist you browse it. That’s why we’re linking to it from our Census page — because we love great journalism.
- Marcy Williams is a web editor on my staff who recently retired. She had been working with us for more than a decade, and her work online pre-dated most web experts you come across on Twitter — and all of those early online efforts came after she retired as an elementary school principal. She is already greatly missed in our newsroom, but her life in retirement can still be followed with her Travel Along blog. See her post this week about trying to go to an OU-Texas game without a ticket — and let that be a lesson to all as they prepare for the 2011 OU-Texas game.
- On Wednesday, I came across this story on our Know It page that covers Unusual Oklahoma. It was about a boy in Woodward who was rescued after his tongue was stuck on a frozen metal pole. It was a story straight out of the famous holiday movie, “A Christmas Story.” This wasn’t a story that inspired great journalism. And it wasn’t a story that became extremely popular on the website. But it does illustrate just the massive amount of content we can offer in a single day. And it’s probably the story that I’ll remember more than anything else this week. Especially the this line: “… the boy told officials he got stuck after his brother dared him to lick the pole.”
You can now see everything produced by Helen Ford Wallace on Helen’s personality page. Helen is an icon at The Oklahoman and NewsOK. She’s has enough energy to fill the newsroom, which I’ve written about before. And now she joins our other prime personalities with a page devoted to all the work she produces — blogs, videos, articles, photo galleries, Twitter posts, etc.
- The new personality pages bring up another cool page we have on NewsOK. All the personalities we’ve pulled out to a separate page can be found on our NewsOK Blogs main page, where you can see all the personalities and all the blogs we have available on the site. I love to visit the page once a day, because I always see something I hadn’t seen on the site yet.
- Database editor Paul Monies doesn’t have a personality page, but he has the next best thing. He edits and controls a page completely devoted to one of his passions. His passion is right your right to know. He blogs on his Data Watch blog and posts tons of database information that empowers you as an American citizen with more information. He has city code complaints, pot hole complaints, gifts from stat lobbyists and much, much more. One thing that caught my eye this week was his map of the top neighborhoods in Oklahoma City with home vacancies.
Enjoy another week of NewsOK browsing.