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Matchmaker, Matchmaker

"Melissa Gold met Adam Gottlieb when their grandmothers set them up on a blind date. Now the groom is about to discover what it means to marry into the Gold family horseradish legacy."
--NY Times

I found a video about this couple on the video library on the New York times website. What a wonderful way to include positive news! The way this site is set up, you get a much clearer sense of who these people are than you would when just reading a short little blurb about them in an actual newspaper. Here you get the full force of their personalities--complete with them misspeaking (I thought it was hilarious when the woman accidentally said their grandmothers were in a "Yente" club--you have to know Fiddler on the Roof to get it). You get great visuals like them in the horse radish factory and the puzzle that Adam made to propose to Melissa with; you also get great audio like Adam imitating his grandmother telling him to "make sure you keep your pants buttoned." If you look at the actual article that goes with it, it just doesn't have the same vitality. There are some interesting tidbits of course, like Melissa wondering why Adam wanted to hear her voice because she thought it was annoying, but it's just not the same as actually getting to see these people interacting in such a warm and pleasant way. I think stories like this that don't have anything shockingly newsworthy about them are much more effective when you can do videos like this, because people are able to connect with ordinary people much more when they can see their physical and vocal quirks, which often communicate so much more than just quotes they read in a newspaper.

Comments (4)

Andrew Wichrowski:

I think that is the goal of the online version of The New York Times, to elicit the kind of response from the reader that you had. Instead of perfunctorily publishing their print stories on the internet, they have been utilizing different forms of media (such as videos, sideshows, and picture galleries) to give a new depth to the news that can't be done with a newspaper.

Angela Palumbo:

This is such a cute video you found here, Matt. What a way to propose, a puzzle. That's definately thoughtful. I really liked the video touch because as you said, I felt like I was getting the chance to actually get to know these people. I got the see the actual puzzle and hear them recounting the cute way that they met. Even though I would not call it particularly newsworthy that's what I love about it. The fact that these two ordinary people are included on the New York Times website seems to remind us all that no matter how bad things get, life goes on. People find ways around the economy or tragedy and continue to do good things and enjoy life. It's truly heartwarming.

Jennifer Prex:

I agree. A news article about them would seem so impersonal in comparison.

Matt Henderson:

I think all three of you have pointed out the advantages online media has over print media. As you pointed out, Andrew, the New York Times' website can feature a much wider variety of content than the print version. When you're a big publication like the NYT and have to compete with all the other big-name newspapers of the U.S., I would think it would almost be mandatory to feature multiple forms of media other than print in order to stay competitive. It can be helpful to have the NYT online for those who don't want to subscribe to the print version, but it broadens the audience substantially when there are videos, slideshows, and galleries--these kinds of things interest readers who might not otherwise be interested in reading the NYT as it appears in print form.

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