The Enterprise and The Patriot Ledger get the nod for Wednesday's shared centerpiece.
The Enterprise staff writers Maria Papadopoulos and Justin Graeber teamed up to write the story that looks at offenders' rights versus the safety of the public.
On the front, the main visual used on both fronts is a set of mugs, 37 to be exact, set to a grid that ultimately forms the border around the centerpiece story.
It's a highly visible way to illustrate the controversial nature of the story about sex offender registries. The story flat out asks this question: "Does having the registry make the public safer or does it unfairly target sex offenders?"
It's a highly debatable issue for which this blog is not about to tackle. Because page design is the topic here, I have to pose this question: By including the mugs on the front pages, are the papers unfairly targeting sex offenders or making the public safer?
I think by omitting the names from the front, I think it's fair to say that the papers are staying neutral on the topic, at least on the front pages of these editions.
I think, though, a line should have bee included somewhere in the package that states something like "The mug shots on this page show the faces of local people who are convicted Level 3 sex offenders." Without that line, readers could come to any conclusion about why these people were pictured here.
Regardless of where you stand on this issue, I think it's fair to say that the bold centerpieces on both fronts engage readers to dig deeper into the stories inside and other content online.
Joe Greco is corporate design director for GateHouse Media.
Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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