Confused observers


What is it about North Carolina and newspaper names that confuses the national media? This example, from this story at The Hill, mashes up the identities of the state’s two largest papers, a common error.

Sure, they both have “observer” in their names, and both are owned by McClatchy. A cynical person may blame the confusion on the merger of the papers’ sports, state government and features departments, a cost-cutting decision that’s led to layoffs.

Truth be told, it has become harder to tell the papers apart. Things were more interesting when they were competitors, journalistically if not financially.

Yet it seems unlikely that the likes of MSNBC, Politico and The Hill are following the machinations of McClatchy that closely. You have to be here to see it happen day to day.

So, here’s what the national media need to know: The Charlotte Observer is in Charlotte. The News & Observer is in Raleigh. They are separate cities and newspapers, at least for now. And Charlotte isn’t Charleston.

UPDATES: John Robinson of the News & Record shares similar tales about the Greensboro paper, and Under the Dome offers a guide to D.C. journalists covering North Carolina.

(Hat tip: RTB.)