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Denver Dailies Suffer Production Disaster on Worst Possible Day

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October 24, when the Colorado Rockies face off against the Boston Red Sox in game one of the 2007 World Series, should be the biggest day in years for the print versions of the Denver Post and the Rocky Mountain News. Whereas a hefty percentage of folks currently prefer to get their news online, local baseball nuts will want to hang on to physical copies of today's Post and Rocky for posterity -- and understanding that, the dailies produced commemorative World Series sections. But because of technical problems, thousands of Coloradoans left for work this morning without seeing any of this material -- and I was among them.

I headed for the office at an absurdly early time: 5:45 a.m. The dailies "guarantee" delivery by 5:30 a.m., though, and both papers generally hit my driveway a good half-hour earlier than that. But today, only the Rocky turned up prior to my departure -- and only the Rocky was at Westword upon my arrival. Moreover, the Post still isn't here as of this writing: 9:08 a.m.

Westword isn't being singled out. When I phoned the Denver Newspaper Agency's circulation line, I heard the following canned message: "We are experiencing extreme delivery delays as a result of production difficulties and are experiencing a high volume of calls. You may have to wait several minutes to talk to a customer service representative. We will be delivering newspapers in many areas throughout the entire day."

My recorded buddy went on to inform me that the electronic versions of the Post and the Rocky are free today in an apparent attempt to make up for the inconvenience to readers. So I went to the Post website to see what I had been missing up until that point, and after typing in my e-mail address -- which will undoubtedly subject me to oodles of de facto spam from the dailies for the next half century or so -- I was taken to page one of the news section. Unfortunately, finding the World Series features was considerably more difficult. Clicking the "World Series" button in the table of contents section brought me face to screen with a giant ad for Dick's Sporting Goods -- not what I was hoping for. So I tried the "World Series" button along the left border of my monitor and wound up on the page seen here. However, a co-worker who actually got a Post around 7:30 a.m. tells me that there are two special sections, and this page isn't on the front of either of them. That leaves me with the option of trying to dig through the electronic edition for who knows how long trying to locate these offerings or moving on with my day and hoping a carrier eventually comes by our building and drops off the real things.

In the end, I chose the latter course, and plenty of other locals probably did likewise. That's not good news for the dailies, but it does put them in league with the Rockies. Today, the Post and the Rocky are as good at delivering papers as the team is at selling World Series tickets. -- Michael Roberts

Update: Hooray! Westword finally got its copy of the Post -- at 11:05 a.m.! Talk about going into extra innings...

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