Mapping local crimes in zoned weekly editions

Headline: Mapping local crimes from weekly zoned editions
Outlet: Denver Post
Journalist: Kevin Hamm
Tags: ,

The Denver Post’s YourHub community section has a great approach to grouping and displaying blotter items from its 10 zoned weekly editions.

Kevin Hamm, a journalist for YourHub, wrote in an email to us that the blotter reports are “one of the more popular items we do, but they’re not easily read together since they’re in 10 different editions and 10 different websites.”

“So I started gathering them all together, plotting them on a Google map, choosing the best dozen or so (out of 50 some-odd reports weekly), rewriting the headlines if necessary and putting them together in one post that runs on the Denver Post’s crime blog, the Rap Sheet,” Hamm wrote.

He adds that “it’s definitely a group effort” with the blotter for each edition written by the reporter specific to it.

The interactive map has been a hit, getting an average of two or three times the traffic as the full blog post.

It’s a neat approach for both how it pulls together regional content and the added value of the map, which gives readers the ability to check out recent crimes based on their proximity to where they live or work. Plus, Kevin does a great job of pulling together the most interesting content and giving them punchy headlines.

Check out a recent example, “Metro Denver Crime Blotter: Man waving glow sticks caught with his pants down.”

For DFM staffers looking to duplicate this effort, Kevin said he’d be happy to share more on his workflow and how to make it happen. Send him an email.

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