The Post is breaking news on the web first.

Scribes will need all the time they can get, since Moore envisions a significant shift in the way news will be presented in the Post's print edition. Because Internet-savvy folks and those addicted to cable news already know the basic outline of many items before the Post hits their driveways, "the web will be our breaking-news platform," Moore says, "and the newspaper will be our platform for exclusive reporting and stories that really focus on telling people what happens next."

Beat writers in the sports department have struck this balance for years, Cardwell points out. "If there's a Broncos game, everybody knows the score before the paper comes out -- so sportswriters don't make their lead what the score was. Their lead is a more narrative, colorful description of the game. It's been that way around the country for years, and that's the way it's going to go in news at progressive, forward-thinking newspapers."

Moore hopes this approach won't alienate those traditionalists who remain devoted to newspapers, whether they seem old-fashioned or not. But from a business perspective, the move is a no-brainer. "Our bedrock newspaper reader is probably fifty-something," he maintains, "whereas the people who are reading us on the web are in that coveted 18-to-34-year-old demographic."

If the Post can't hang on to this last group, its future is bleak. No wonder Moore thinks pushing scoops to the web is less risky than the alternative. "One of our staffers said to me, 'This one is pretty simple. Either do it or die,'" Moore recalls. "And I looked at this person and said, 'Yeah, you're right. Do it or die.'"

Age and appeal: Lawsuits are seldom adjudicated quickly. That's certainly true of an age-discrimination charge leveled against Westword. The matter has been winding its way through the legal system for four long years, but may finally have reached its resolution.

As previously reported here, former Westword staff writer Steve Jackson filed suit against this publication in 2002, arguing that he was a victim of age discrimination. His original allegation stated that editor Patricia Calhoun "fired Jackson" in September 2001, when he was 46, after "falsely claiming that his position was being eliminated due to 'company-wide downsizing.'" New Times Media, Westword's parent company at the time, denied any wrongdoing, and in January 2005, U.S. District Court Judge Phillip Figa granted a motion from the company, which contended that Jackson hadn't presented enough evidence for a reasonable jury to find in his favor. Jackson promptly appealed on the grounds that Figa had erred in excluding testimony from one of his key witnesses, former Phoenix New Times editor Patti Epler. The case eventually wound up in the United States Court of Appeals, 10th Circuit, but the outcome was the same. In a 26-page document dated August 1 that affirmed the lower court's conclusions, Judge Terrence L. O'Brien wrote that Epler's testimony was "irrelevant to Jackson's claims."

Jackson did not return a call seeking comment.

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