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Paper Monitor

13:42 UK time, Tuesday, 24 August 2010

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

Underground mining incidents, ocean-bed oil spills... there's nothing like a below the surface news story to flex the ambitions of a newspaper infographics team.

But which unit of measurement best illustrates the depths at which said incident has occurred?

The Chilean mining accident, which has left 33 men safe but stranded underground, has many of the papers sharpening their infographic tool kits.

The Daily Mail has Nelson's Column as its SI unit of choice - noting in its graphic that "Miners are at a depth 14 times the height of Nelson's Column (169ft)".

With its depictions of men hunched in an emergency refuge, the graphic has a dramatic, human quality. However, Paper Monitor can't help but feel a little queasy when focusing specifically on how the artist has chosen to depict the blockage itself.

The Independent sets its sights further afield for its helpful unit of measurement - the Empire State building. Not been to New York recently? Well book a flight if only to recalibrate your height/depth internal reference system. Take in the Statue of Liberty while you're there (46m, or 93m if you include the pedestal).

The Times introduces Big Ben into its inforgraphic while the Guardian opts for the Canary Wharf tower.

Canaries and mine shafts - perhaps not the most sensitive of choices.

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