New York Times dabbles successfully in the absurd


The New York Times has tried a bit of a bolder experiment as it expands its offerings online: Acted out re-enactments of actual transcriptions. The result is quite amusing, if not news, per se.


The first installment of “Verbatim” focuses on testimony captured involving a local government’s refusal to make a digital copy of files, and instead charging an exhorbitant sum to photocopy pages. The testimony revolved around the definition of a photocopier. The actual lawyer involved in taking the deposition already refuted the tone of the acting, although that wasn’t really the point – it was to take real life dialogue and bring it to life in an amusing way, something that succeeds here in spades.

Of course, other than drawing eyeballs, it could be questioned what the New York Times is doing dabbling in something like this to begin with, but clearly they’ve got a buzz around this, so mission accomplished, I guess. Hopefully they don’t see this as a point forward in drifting from news and information.

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