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Paper Monitor

11:24 UK time, Friday, 12 August 2011

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

Today, we speak in praise of features. Paper Monitor's highest accolade is that it rather wishes it had thought of a particular feature idea itself.

The very best ideas seem really obvious, once they've been had of course.

The Sun has picked up on a survey from earlier in the week about the decline of hitch-hiking. They've sent their man from Sun HQ in Wapping to Glasgow, using only his thumb.

The feature is illustrated with a big map, but the thing that jumps out is that it took 31 hours and six lifts to make the journey. Admittedly 12 hours of that was in a hotel in Carlisle. But he got soaked by passing lorries and waited at least an hour by the road for all of his lifts. Dedication.

One thing Paper Monitor has to observe though is that as well as the reporter Lee Price, there's a photographer credited. Did they try and cadge lifts for two? Or did the photographer have his own car and follow. Hmmmmm.

Over in the Daily Mail, there's a classic feature. It's a failure in one sense. It asks the question: "Has this woman worked out how to win the lottery?" But the question isn't answered.

At the same time, it's a fascinating read about the professional statistician and former maths professor who's won £13m with four scratchcards. It really leaves you wanting more.

In the Guardianthey have a Joe Queenan piece on the obsession with the end of the world in movies. It's a variation on a much-discussed theme, but it's still entertaining stuff.

Let's drink a toast to feature-writers tonight.

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