CRITIQUING A MULTIMEDIA PIECE

LA Times Graphics wrote a multimedia piece reporting on how the historically Republican Orange County broke record when it voted blue in the 2016 election.

The article combined two different mediums: text and graphics. The authors used text to provide context for the statistics represented in the charts and graphs. For example, the first paragraph sets up the article by discussing how Orange Country has had held a 50+ year record of voting Republican in every election since FDR. The second paragraph discusses how the demographics of cities have influenced their voting patterns (populous cities with minorities vote Democrat), and these statistics are shown in the maps below.

The graphics consist of maps and graphs. Graphs show either percent increase or decline of OC’s Democrat or Republican voting, and maps depict which party people voted in correlation to demographic and geographic location.

This article is super cool. Aside from being interested in the story because I’m originally from Orange County, I think the text and graphics complement each other to deliver easy-to-digest information. The text is concise — providing context for graphs, and helping convey the story of how voting patterns changed in 2016. The graphics visually and simply prove how voting patterns changed statistically in OC last year.

Overall, this multimedia piece was succinct as well as informative. I had no problem reading the entire thing. I kind of wished they could’ve included data from a couple elections further in the past, like data from how Orange County voted during FDR’s election (considering they mentioned FDR’s election in the title). It would’ve been super interesting to see the demographic and geographic layout for that voter base. Maybe an animated map, like a GIF, of how voting patterns changed from the 2012 election to the 2016 election would’ve been more attention-grabbing. Nevertheless, it was an interesting read.

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