Friday, April 10, 2015

Tormented lede of the morning

Raising the musical question: Is there a particular kind of crime the cops aren't supposed to investigate?

General principle of lede-writing: When in doubt, tell us who did what to whom. Save the doin'-what-you-don't-confess for your budding career as a singer-songwriter.

OK, one more thing. As long as you're going to edit for online readers, why not try it for print victims too?

The U.S. State Department and Department of Defense did not return calls seeking comment Thursday evening. State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf had said last week that an operation to rescue Americans in Yemen was too risky, and "could put U.S. citizens' lives at greater risk" because "the situation in Yemen is quite dangerous and unpredictable."

It's nice to have spelled "quite" correctly (especially if the alternative was adding a comma to "quiet, dangerous and unpredictable"). It's probably nicer, transparency-wise, to have pointed out that the comments came from a briefing last week, rather than leaving open the possibility that they were some sort of response to Thursday evening's* curiosity.

* Were the lawsuits filed after hours, or did it just not occur to anyone until evening that comment might be warranted?

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