NOTE TO READERS: When this project lost substantial funding at the end of 2018, I lost the ability to continue publishing criteria-driven news story reviews and PR news release reviews - once the bread-and-butter of the site going back to 2006. The 3,200 archived reviews, while still educational, are getting old and difficult for me to technically maintain on the back end of the website. So I am announcing that I plan to remove these reviews from the site by April 1, 2021. The blog and the toolkit - two of the most popular features on the site - will remain. If you wish to peruse the reviews before they disappear, please do so by the end of March 2021. After that date you may still be able to access them via the Internet Archive Wayback Machine -

New analysis: Story grades for 2011

Posted By


Before we turn over the calendar from 2011 to 2012, here’s a breakdown of the grades of all 338 stories reviewed by us in 2011 (with a possible few more additions to come).

Let me explain the columns.  From left to right, they are:

The criterion.

The raw number of satisfactory scores for that criterion.

The raw number of unsatisfactory scores for that criterion.

The raw number of Not Applicable scores for that criterion.

The total number of stories.

The percent satisfactory when you subtract the Not Applicable scores from the total.


Don’t be thrown off by the deceivingly high news release score.  We must have a news release in hand and see firm evidence of text being copied from a news release into a story in order to rule unsatisfactory on this one.  So the fact that even 22 stories were unsatisfactory is troubling.

Another way of looking at this is by the number of stories that got 0-5 stars – tabulated based on the number of satisfactory scores for the 10 criteria.

Here is 2010’s breakdown of star scores for 419 stories versus 2011’s breakdown of star scores for 338 stories.

The average star score for 2010 was 3.057.

The average star score for 2011 was 2.988.

The average star score for our entire run of nearly 6 years is 3.04.

The greater number of very weak 0-star scores for 2011 dragged down the average.

You can see all of those star scores for any of the news organizations we currently review on our interactive chart.

Even though we reviewed fewer stories in 2011 than in 2010, we are still reviewing an average of more than 1 per weekday (1.3) and that includes holidays and shutdown of the site for relaunch in November and for any vacation.

More than 1,600 stories have now been reviewed since we launched in 2006.

You might also like


Please note, comments are no longer published through this website. All previously made comments are still archived and available for viewing through select posts.

Comments are closed.