Should "The Apprentice" finale story be on Page 1?

We published a story on the front page Friday about the winner in the popular television show, "The Apprentice." Did you read the story? Do you think it was appropriate to put the story on the front page? Did we publish other stories that should have been on the front page instead of "The Apprentice?" Let me know.
We're interested in gathering reader feedback on our decisions. And from time to time we will ask readers to tell us what they think about our stories and photos. Thanks for your insight, and feel free to contact me whenever you see something that you would like to comment on. -- Gary Graham, managing editor

Update: We've now heard from a few readers...

I like current things on the front page, and I don't mean all war stories. I think so many people were interested in the outcome of the Apprentice that it was a good choice for the front page. Keep it up. -- Margaret Blodgett, Mead

I saw the story but didn't read it since I have no interest in "The Apprentice" in particular or "Contrived Reality" TV in general. I think the top half of the front page should generally feature top local news stories. People like to read about people, places and events they are familiar with. -- Allen Peterson, Spokane

To be honest, I did not read the story because I found it deeply offensive. My instant reaction was dissappointment that the Spokesman-Review has joined in blurring the lines between news and entertainment, a fashion that is lowering respect for real journalism in our country. Tragically, just when our country has entered profoundly dangerous political waters, at a time when knowledge of world politics is crucial to our very survival, Americans are being encouraged to distract themselves with trivia, and young people can name entertainers, but not the president of France. You might consider asking yourselves this question: How do you think Edward R. Murrow would respond? -- Reverend Dr. Iris St. John, Spokane

I got through a couple of sentences but lost interest. I watch a few reality shows but "The Apprentice" doesn't peak my interest, I don't think any TV show deserves the front page, seems kind of tacky. -- Paul Alsept, Spokane

If the winner of "The Apprentice" assassinated a figure in public office, or is developing a cure for cancer, then yes, they should be featured in a front page story. If the story simply reports on events depicted on the television show, then you should be ashamed for even asking this question. Such reporting plays a seemingly small but ultimately critical part in defining the society's values, in the same way that one person's vote in a political election plays a seemingly small but ultimately critical part in defining public policy. -- Tina Barros, Spokane

Yes, I did see the article. I guess it's news to somebody. I suggest that you have an entertainment section, a region section and even a Monday Morning pop section. That's where I might have gone to look for the article.

My view of "Pop" culture--and I don't mean to be a snob about it--is that it is "POP-ular" because it appeals to the lowest common denominator in the culture. I don't think "American Idol" is particularly uplifting, but it IS entertaining.

I believe the better parts of what we do contribute to the uplifting or the protection of the population or the culture. If it protects my kids from the bad guys, or helps to make them better people, then it's one of these "better things".

That's why I think it's "Real News" when you expose either facts about, (or arguments in the debate between) what is or isn't happening in one of these areas. If the bad guys are winning, I need to know. If the good guys are ahead, then I want to know. And I need to know how to support the good guys if they need me.

But I don't think it's news when:
--somebody who wants the job thinks the incumbent is doing a bad job, unless he actually has a fact or two that make a difference.
--somebody who makes money off the process invents a new criticism of something.
--somebody who's a nobody becomes a somebody for a bit by winning a talent show. But it might be entertaining. -- J.R. Sloan, Spokane

Thank you for asking, but I did not read the article. However, I would rather see things like that on the front page instead of articles about the deaths in Iraq and politics, etc. I think it is time that the news media focus on the wonderful, good things that are happening, and there are many. -- Jeanne Lenoch

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