Sunday, March 20, 2011

Strat 18

I had a hard time looking up corrections online, but this assignment did bring me back to a Gainesville Sun article I read a few weeks ago where my friend was identified incorrectly. The sentence reads: “Sara Kaner, a 23-year-old education student, said the group raised more than $5,200 to paint educational scenes in the hallway and to landscape an outdoor area.” Sara is a 19-year-old public relations student.

I thought it was hilarious to say the least. But, honestly, how do you mess that up? Ages, majors and phone numbers are the first things I write down when I interview people at events. There’s always a situation where you may misinterpret what someone said, or you just need some sort of verification in general, and this is where checking your facts should be second nature. If you got that wrong, how does the reader know how much money the group raised for the project, or if Duval Elementary was the fourth school the group renovated, or even if Sara’s name was spelled correctly?

I know this is the simplest of examples in being skeptical as an editor, but it goes without saying that no one fact should be overlooked. Everything should be questioned. I think this error was mostly caused by negligence of the writer, and not the editor, but still both deserve the blame.

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