Coming Soon: All the News That Fits in Print (and Online)


Coming soon to a newspaper – and website – near you: shorter news stories. Citing failures to exercise “important news judgment” and tight editing, the Associated Press’ Managing Editor for U.S. News Brian Carovillano has instructed his fellow editors to limit most stories to 300-500 words, with the top 1-2 stories reaching 500-700 words and only “top global stories” able to exceed 700 tightly written and edited words. What’s driving this change? The AP recognizes their digital customers don’t have the attention span for most long pieces and are “in fact turned off when they are too long.” The wire service also wants to make things easier for the AP’s subscribing papers to fit AP content into increasingly shrinking print real estate. Carovillano cites the success of AP Europe in cutting stories and wants his writers’ efforts to stand “stand out among a sea of bloated mid-level copy.” This post? 150 words.