Editing is Essential

by Roger Pynn

Newlywed, 4 others killed in limo fire | Video

Updated: 7:47 a.m.

Who wouldn’t click that headline?  I wonder how many of you clicked it before you read this post.

It was shocking.  You had to be sad before you got to the story.

And when you’d finished you realized it was wrong.  It may be true, but officials refused to confirm whether the deceased included a bride, or even that it was – as some had reported – a bridal party in the limousine.

In all communication, what you say first is critical to your effort to inform, entertain or persuade your audience.  We all understand the economic pressures facing the media, but their woes will only worsen if they continue to fail at the basics … which include assuring that headline writers carefully ready the stories they are trying to introduce.

2 Responses to Editing is Essential

  1. Roger Pynn says:

    At least in print editions when papers get something wrong they print a retraction or correction. Online editions, however, simply erase it and “poof” … it never happened. Clicking this link now, there’s a story that gets it right … but no reference to the “oops.” Oh, well … remember the good old days.

  2. […] You may think by the time you’re through that all they’ve done is to apply the concepts of Microsoft’s Track Changes or some other group editing tool to the business of online journalism.  But this is so much more, and actually goes to a point I made last week commenting on an earlier post. […]

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