A bunch of Times readers have emailed to say how jarring they found this morning's front page. Not because the news stories above the fold were all local, but that the local news wasn't all that major. The lede story is about Rocky Delgadillo filing charges and a civil suit against Kaiser for dumping one patient on Skid Row — not too many mere court filings, especially misdemeanors, have gotten lede-story play before. The Vernon indictments are more defensible, because of the paper's history of investigating the tiny city. The four-column photo and three-column hed on the City Council's preliminary approval of a living wage requirement for LAX hotels is strangely intense play, given the Times' slow embrace of the unfolding story. At least it actually is a big local story. (Added: Too bad the African American man shown "celebrating" in the pic is not one of the hotel workers, but Venice gadfly Michael Hunt. He's at the Council most every day.) Sample email:
When I picked up the front section this morning I actually thought I had accidentally picked up the California section instead. I think that the LAT needs to beef up it's local coverage, but there's something unsettling and alarming about the balance of today's cover stories," a former Times staffer writes. "Dean has definitely left the building."
Perhaps it's how they do it Chicago? There's also a little dig at Chicago in the weather refer box at the lower left, perhaps suggesting the Times plans to play inside baseball and get more quippy on the front page.