When the Los Angeles Times tinkered with its design this week, the Sports section stopped producing the long-standing Morning Briefing feature. Papers all around the country used MB in their own Sports sections. Eric Crawford, a sports columnist at the Lousiville Courier-Journal, speaks for them:
Just a quick note to acknowledge the passing of a rather well-known feature in one of the nation's top newspaper Sports sections.
The Los Angeles Times feature "Morning Briefing" included short, interesting nuggets from sports every morning in the Times, and went out via wire services to newspapers across the nation. It was ditched in a redesign of the paper announced today.
Sometimes, you wonder if papers aren't designing themselves out of business.
Regardless, it's something a lot of sports fans checked pretty often thanks to the web.
The demise of Morning Briefing also spurred a discussion thread at Sports Journalists.com in which the opinion lines up universally opposed to the cutback. Jon Weisman's thread at Dodger Thoughts pays tribute to the late sports writer Harley Tinkham for starting MB (* see below) and has already drawn 400+ comments. That said, the Fabulous Forum blog where the LAT sports staff is putting its short items instead is pretty good and very full. Either Sports staffers were itching for the online outlet or they believed editor Randy Harvey meant it when he said to contribute — Harvey himself is posting too, which helps.
Add Fabulous Forum: Lance Pugmire visits inside the new Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario, SoCal's latest sports venue.
* Update to origins: A former LAT Sports staffer emails: "Although Harley Tinkham wrote the column for many years and distinguished himself by making MB one of the most widely-read articles in the sports section, the column was the creation of late sports editor Bill Shirley back in the 1970s. He assigned it first to former Times sportswriter Dwight Chapin. Shirley told Chapin he wanted MB to be 'light…but not too light.'"