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Paper Monitor

11:46 UK time, Monday, 18 February 2008

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

Oh dear, Northern Rock is back in the headlines and we know who that upsets most. Not the Chancellor of the Exchequer, the shareholders or even those with an account at the troubled bank. Nope, the sorriest faces are worn by the picture editors.

So what's it to be? A picture of a harried-looking chancellor (grey man in a grey suit); those queues of worried investors winding round the block (novel at the time, but it was almost six months ago) or, no, please, no, not the Northern Rock clock. Argh!

Paper Monitor has previously noted the neat, albeit rather exhausted, metaphor supplied by the clock outside Northern Rock's HQ, which has, invariably been pictured at 11 o'clock or, for additional drama, one minute to midnight.

Now the fate of the bank has been decided, Paper Monitor was hoping the clock would be wound down.

The Guardian clearly agrees, and has opted for a different sort of visual symbolism – a green traffic light in the foreground of a Northern Rock sign. Clever, if a little strained.

The Times and Financial Times throw their weight behind graphs – always a good indicator of a story that can't be easily illustrated.

But it's the Daily Telegraph and the Sun which just can't let go of that clock, the latter pointedly picturing it at 3.20. What can that mean? End of the school day (well, almost)? Start of kids' TV? Tea break? Dawn approaching?

Below is a selection of your thoughts on the significance of 3.20.


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