And that's how editors were born
Ever wonder how little readers understand about the day-to-day operations of a newspaper? Read this ombud column from the Sacramento Bee.
When Tony Marcano got some grief from readers about story edits, he was dumbfounded at the cause: Readers couldn't believe that what made it into the paper was not the mirror image of what came over on the wires.
Readers were upset to learn that editors were taking words, even sentences out. One wrote:
When did it become acceptable to split a sentence in such a manner, even for space concerns? Granted, it's a small change, but it leads to another key point in the article. ...Flag every story that has been edited down? I mean, have you ever read any story that you didn't pare down some? Remove some obfuscation? End a sentence a tad earlier?
"Given that trust in the media is fragile enough, why doesn't The Bee flag print articles that are edited for space? At a minimum, it would be true disclosure. This 'flag' could point the user to The Bee's website for the full, unedited version.
The national editor at the Bee came up with some good explanations of why we do what we do. It's just remarkable that people find subterfuge in everything.