Saturday, October 31, 2015

Who's got brush duty?

Sad thing about headlines: Nothing's as unambiguous as you think it is.

(h/t the Central Ohio bureau)

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

We don't need no badges

When they put it that way, it does sound like a pretty easy decision.


Saturday, October 24, 2015

Today in making stuff up

You can draw your own conclusions about why this was the fourth most important story of the morning at the Fair 'n' Balanced Network, but wouldn't you really like to know where the hed came from?

The couple have stayed strong in their Christian faith throughout their ordeal, but Rory admits that they are heartbroken and scared.

“I’m not going to tell you that I’m okay with this because ‘God has a bigger plan’. Or that ‘we’ll understand His bigger purpose somewhere down the line’. That logic doesn’t really work for me right now,” he writes.

Granted, journalism doesn't do very well with the idea of context -- mostly, I think, because we tend to confuse "out of context" with "embarrassing," as in this example from July:
Read more »

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Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Neither fish nor fowl

What's new at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Nation's Newspaper of Record?

An art review on Friday about an exhibition of work by Martin Roth at the Louis B. James gallery in Manhattan misidentified the creature Mr. Roth once released in the Chinese Garden Court at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It was a goldfish, not a goldfinch.

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Thursday, October 08, 2015

Me Tarzan, you do battle

Isn't upstyle fun? Quicker than you can say "Debbie Does Dallas," you can turn an online-era defamation claim into a crash blossom!

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Thursday, October 01, 2015

Smite them, Lord Apis

No, he didn't. Had Mr. Trump actually said "God damn the Bush-Rubio relationship," that might have been interesting. Instead:

KEENE, New Hampshire -- GOP frontrunner Donald Trump came out on the attack in New Hampshire on Wednesday, with strong language to describe Florida senator Marco Rubio's warm relationship with his former mentor, Gov. Jeb Bush.

How strong?

"They hate each other," Trump said of his rivals for the Republican nomination. "They hate, trust me I know. They hate so much. They hate more than anybody in this room hates their neighbor. But it's political bullsh*t, do you understand? It's true."

CBS might faint at the very thought of the elongated yellow barnyard epithet being used in polite company (assuming it can figure out where all the pronouns attach and what Mr. Trump is actually trying to say, which are preconditions to figuring out whether this round of gibberish is remotely a lede). But on behalf of copy editors everywhere, I reserve the right to be annoyingly prescriptive on this topic: Without the presence of a certified bull god, "bullshit" is not profanity.

Dainty asterisks aside, is he describing the "warm relationship" itself as bullshit, or saying that his rivals' alleged public facade of enmity is bullshit? Or does the day's top political news from the elongated yellow primary state actually boil down to Grownup Says Bad Word? (Given that we're reduced to taking a wire story on Grownup Mistakenly Says True Word, there's cause to be concerned about the distribution of staff resources here.)

Covering the bull race is one thing. Ignoring everything but the bullshit is another. Beware the wrath of Apis.

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