Thursday, September 10, 2015

Incompetent news stories.

I'm noticing more and more news articles that are badly written.  I noticed it first with online stories, but lately, even the big boys are spilling out poorly edited and constructed stories. I mean, I'm talking New York Times, Washington Post, et al.

The leds are buried, sometimes they aren't even clear. Words that don't belong. And a general lack of structure.

Is this the result of the consolidation of news into cheaper and cheaper venues? Have the big boys cut so much that they aren't any better than the internet? Cause if that happens, what good are they?

Or maybe I'm just noticing it more because I'm doing so much writing myself.  I can tell when it's slapdash and when its been carefully considered, when the writer gives a shit or is just slapping out an assignment.

So for instance, a front page article in the Bulletin this morning. It's written by CQ-Roll Call, entitled, "Outsider Candidates, Any Hope?"

Here's an example of what I consider confusing or vague language:

"With many of the 17 candidates talking about their resumes (talking about their resumes?), these outsiders are showing something different." OK. I get what he's saying, but only because I puzzle it out. But it's such a vague statement as to be useless. It's just taking up space. By the way, "showing" and "talking" are two different things.

Or this: "Both he (Carson) and Trump, leading campaigns that have been embolden by their demeanor, are not dissimilar." I'm not sure I can make sense of that even when I try. I think he's saying, "Though Carson and Trump are exhibit different demeanor, they are not dissimilar."  Or even better, "Though Carson's diffident personality and Trump's brash one have emboldened their campaigns, they are not dissimilar." Something like that, still not very good.

"And, while Trump has drawn criticized (criticism?) for his statements that have been deemed offensive (offensive statements?) -- dissing Mexican immigrants, inflammatory statements about women, and nearing on bullying his opponents...."

That's where I gave up: "...nearing on bullying his opponents..." I can't make any sense of that one. (After more thought, I get it. Trump is nearly bullying his opponents. Or his treatment of his opponent is nearing (verges on) bullying.

This is their job, man.  Give a shit.

1 comment:

OHDG said...

A lot of stories online are written by bots.... NPR did a story on it recently. Also too much time is spent developing clickbait.