Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Worst of all worlds

Is it a trender? Is it a brief? Well, it's been whacked by 85%, but it's got a big hed and a color photo and it's the only non-local story on the front ... you make the call!

This tale moved as the "AP Centerpiece," meaning we're not sure what. It originally weighed in at just north of 1,000 words, presumably enough to support some of the assertions, at least a bit -- you know, the ones like "small but growing number of parents" and "hints at the potential importance of domain names in establishing one's future digital identity."

At 160 words, needless to say, it doesn't. All it gets to do is lose all the qualifiers. "It's not known exactly how many," for example. Or "There's no guarantee, though, that domain names will have as central a role in online identity." And those annoying transitional grafs:

Still, even if the effort is for naught, $9 a year is cheap compared with the cost of diapers and college tuition.

That's right, parents! And for that same $9 a year, you can lock in your subscription to headsuptheblog until your poppet enters an accredited journalism program!

In its full glory, this is a dubious trender. As a brief, it's a joke. (Here's a foolproof test for briefs: Can you write a subject-verb-object hed from the lede? If not, it's not a brief!)

Baby Howells gets
own domain name

Besides leaving the hospital with a birth certificate and a clean bill of health, baby Mila Belle Howells got something she won't likely use herself for several years: her very own Internet domain name.

See what we mean?

Anyway, it's always nice to hear that cancer has been cured and the Mideast is at peace. Given all the news space we can now spend on swill, let's swill it a bit more carefully, shall we?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

So does this mean baby name books will be replaced by DNS lookups? "Daddy, why did you call me Ihjkeuyuef?" "Well, honey, all the other domain names were taken."

6:23 AM, August 23, 2007  
Blogger Denise said...

To the above commenter, yes. The story indicates a consultation with baby books, then a quick trip to GoDaddy to check before the final decision.

Our paper ran this story full-length, CP-style treatment, on the back of the business front, our place for useless wire stories. What it has to do with business, I have no idea. ("It's about the Intarweb! Throw it to biz!")

12:58 PM, August 23, 2007  

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