Field Notes: Inside

The Washington Post’s local section is the second/B section of the publication. Titled, Metro, this section features news that is tailored for readers in and around Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia (DMV).

Content in Metro varies, but stories are very straightforward and avid readers of this publication know what type of stories they will receive weekly. Local articles, obituaries and the weather are the main content of the Metro section. Some examples of articles include features on local citizens and businesses, short blurbs on local crime, and columns by WP writers.

The structure of the front of the Metro section is very much like WP’s A1 section. The grid structure, typography, photo and image treatment, and the overall style is the same. Both sections also feature promos at the top of their covers.

Major differences for the two sections include the actual content and the length of the sections. A1 features very “newsy” stories while Metro is very localized. A1 is also longer than Metro because of more sections within A1, as well as longer articles. Also, Metro does not feature refers as does A1.

The WP also has separate weekly sections called, Living Local and Weekend, that are for specific neighborhoods in the DMV area. Both are in tabloid form. These sections include local home and garden advice, what events to attend during the weekend, and other features and less “newsy” information.

For the inside pages, it seems like the WP focuses mainly on words and ads. There are many pages that display full page advertisements. There are also some type of advertisement featured on every page in the inside of the publication.

There are numerous images and photographs featured in the inside content. The WP often uses medium and large images.  There are many colored images and advertisements. The publication varies which pages have color and which pages do not. It often alternates per page.

During my exploration, I drew the conclusion that the WP is about its publication as a whole. There is no focus on one section more than another. The WP entices readers to open their publication through promos and refers on A1. Once readers are inside, they are not disappointed with content. The variety of images and graphics really grab the readers attention. Some featured advertisements are also interesting to look at. Even if readers do not want to read the extensive articles, the images and graphics coupled with the stories have captions that are enough to get a general idea of the stories.

brianamurrell