Sunday, August 7, 2011

Phoning It in at the Star Tribune

There are many things that are still good at the Star Tribune despite the buyouts of the newspaper diaspora, but copy editing is not one of them.

Check out the two blunders that accompanied a New York Times story about treating mental illness as a lifetime, ongoing condition rather than a single event that needs to be cured:

Headline: More are patterning care after addition recovery
First the headline and deck, which would have us believe it is ever possible to recover from elementary school math.

Photo of a man with his eyes closed, caption says  he is in a moment of self-conservation
Then the photo caption. I wondered what the heck a self-conservation was, and in the context of the contemplative image, it seemed pretty likely it was supposed to be self-conversation. After reading the story, I was able to confirm my suspicion:

Close up of the story, which uses the term self-conversation instead
Really, Strib -- the Times provides you with the story and the photo. Is it so hard to write a headline and photo caption without introducing two laughable errors?

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