The Scoop

A blog about what's new and changing on

April 30, 2012's Voter Guide 2012: Be an informed voter's Voter Guide 2012 -- the place to learn about Sacramento-area candidates and issues on the June 5 primary ballot -- launches today.

Simply go to and plug in your address to generate your personalized ballot. See what races you'll vote in. Compare the candidates. Read about the issues.

When you're ready, mark your choices and print or email yourself a completed ballot. You can even share your choices on Facebook, if you like.

Bookmark now and use it as a resource as the June 5 primary nears.

It's optimized for mobile, so you can use it on your tablet, iPhone or Android.

As you might imagine, it takes a good many people here at The Sacramento Bee to pull off a comprehensive guide like this. The heavy lifting was done by researcher Pete Basofin. But, as with most things, his work is never done ...

The Voter Guide will be revised for the November general election. Expect a whole host of new local races and measures, and state propositions.

• Election 2012: Full local and state coverage
• President 2012: Video, Delegate Tracker, Fact Checkers, Predict the Vote
• Endorsements: Recommendations from The Bee's editorial board
• New district maps: Assembly, Senate, Congress

April 12, 2012
Sacramento Bee Facebook timeline: Share your memories

We're having some fun with our Sacramento Bee Facebook timeline. Maybe you've had fun with it, too. Lots of people are sharing the links and leaving comments with their own memories. We hope you will, too.

facebooktimeline.jpgYou'll find a wonderful trove of milestones in Sacramento and world history at

We've added key front pages of The Sacramento Bee since the first issue was published on Feb. 3, 1857 -- the stock market crash of 1929, the JFK assassination in 1963, Princess Diana's death in 1987 and lots more.

You'll also find photos from The Bee archives, including: hostages taken at the Good Guys store, 1991; the Kings' first game in Sacramento, 1985; deadly floods that killed 74 in Northern California, 1955; the opening of Tower Bridge, 1935.

Where were you on these key dates? What do you remember? What stories have you heard? We invite you to share your memories on our Facebook timeline.

I think you'll enjoy this walk back in time -- it's kind of addicting! Thanks go out to The Bee's Kevin Rolf and Pete Basofin for their work on this project. (Read the timeline post on Pete's Sac History Happenings blog.)

April 11, 2012
Want to help Bee editors pick the top stories?

What stories would you put on the front of The Sacramento Bee?

Ever want to tell Bee editors they need to give a story more attention or ask editors what they are thinking in picking stories for the front of the paper or the homepage of

Well, you have a chance to do that every Tuesday through Thursday with Bee editors at 4 p.m., when editors meet to discuss the day's top stories.

The Bee is bringing back a program called Dr. Risk that editors started in January 1994. The program has been on hiatus for the last several years but we think the original goal of the program is even more important today.

The goal of Dr. Risk is to invite community leaders and readers to our daily news meetings to tell us what stories they would put on the front page, and why; someone who would take a "risk" and challenge Bee editors to think about the kind of stories we are showcasing to readers.

To be considered to serve as Dr. Risk, click here to register and pick a date that works for you. An editor will contact you to let you know if you have been picked, or perhaps invite you to apply for another date.

Here's how the program works:

Each week, a reader, aka Dr. Risk, arrives at The Bee at 3:30 p.m. and is given a list of Page 1 story proposals and then attends the 4 p.m. editors' meeting where stories for the next day's front page are discussed. After listening to pitches by editors and asking them questions about their stories, Dr. Risk then recommends the four or five stories she would put on the front page, and why.

The qualifications? Curiosity, an interest in news and the printed edition of The Bee, and a willingness to share your opinion in a constructive manner. The commitment is approximately 90 minutes each afternoon, Tuesday through Thursday.

April 9, 2012
New CrimeMapper lets you see where crime happens

Want to see where crimes occur?'s new CrimeMapper allows you to do just that.

This newly revamped interactive map tracks data from four local law enforcement agencies -- the Sacramento Sheriff's, Sacramento Police, Elk Grove Police and Folsom Police departments. We plan to expand it, adding more agencies as we go.

You can customize your search by type of crime, date or agency. Then click on any icon to see the details of that crime, including the location down to the block.

Viewing from your smartphone or iPad? As part of this update, we also made the CrimeMapper work on most touchscreen devices, including iPhones, iPads and Android devices.

This interactive database of crimes will be updated regularly, depending on the agency, so check back for new data. For now, the record of crimes goes back to January 2012, but the history will grow too.

Thanks for the rebuilt and improved database goes to Bee senior web developer Marc Matteo.

Check out the new CrimeMapper at and give us your feedback: Comment here or email Digital Media Director Seán McMahon at

Related links:
Sacto 9-1-1 crime blog: Daily breaking news
Ask Sacto 9-1-1: Bee reporters answer questions about crime news, trends, other issues
Photo gallery: Most wanted fugitives
Arrest logs: See arrests for 18 cities

About The Scoop

The Scoop is a blog where the managers of talk about new initiatives and our plans for You can reach us by at the e-mail addresses below or you can comment on our postings.

Tom Negrete is managing editor of The Bee and oversees the daily work of journalists who produce news content for the newspaper and Negrete, who has been at The Bee since 1994, has served as assistant managing editor for business and sports, sports editor and assistant city editor. E-mail him at or reach him at (916) 321-1171.

Seán McMahon is The Bee's Director of Digital Media, overseeing the interactive efforts of the company. His e-mail is

Linda Gonzales is digital team leader for and has been an editor at The Bee since 1995. You can email her at

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