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Tue Nov 20, 2012, 03:11 PM

Montana newspaper disciplines copy editor for adding ‘allegedly’ to AP’s 'Obama was born in Hawaii’'

http://jimromenesko.com/2012/11/20/montana-newspaper-disciplines-copy-editor-for-obama-allegedly-born-in-hawaii-line/

The Helena (MT) Independent Record has disciplined a copy editor for changing a line in an Associated Press story to read, “Obama was allegedly born in Hawaii.” A retired AP staffer who worked 28 years in the Helena bureau was one of the readers who complained about the addition of “allegedly.” He tells the paper: “That right-wing notion (that the president isn't a U.S. citizen) has been so thoroughly discredited that only Donald Trump and assorted other loonies still cling to it. Neither the AP nor – I hope – The Independent Record belongs in their company.”

An editor’s note in the Lee Enterprises-owned paper says:

Our copy desk made an error in judgment in editing the Sunday 2A Associated Press story about President Obama’s trip to Asia and his place of birth. One of the copy editors inserted the term “allegedly” born in Hawaii in the story thinking the other copy editor would catch it, he didn’t. It was a poor attempt at humor and a poor decision, but was not intended to be printed in the paper. Those responsible have been disciplined.

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Reply Montana newspaper disciplines copy editor for adding ‘allegedly’ to AP’s 'Obama was born in Hawaii’' (Original post)
Newsjock Nov 2012 OP
Panasonic Nov 2012 #1
yellowcanine Nov 2012 #5
democrattotheend Nov 2012 #12
yellowcanine Nov 2012 #13
NYC Liberal Nov 2012 #2
Brother Buzz Nov 2012 #3
RebelOne Nov 2012 #4
Aristus Nov 2012 #6
tblue37 Nov 2012 #10
Aristus Nov 2012 #11
Cha Nov 2012 #15
freshwest Nov 2012 #18
ROBROX Nov 2012 #7
Jackpine Radical Nov 2012 #8
kestrel91316 Nov 2012 #9
Cha Nov 2012 #14
Hekate Nov 2012 #16
ibegurpard Nov 2012 #17
Hekate Nov 2012 #20
Fumesucker Nov 2012 #19

Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 03:15 PM

1. Fire the editor

 

Birthers should have no jobs.

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Response to Panasonic (Reply #1)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 03:22 PM

5. Supposedly he did it as a "joke" thinking the other copy editor would catch it. Some joke.

No one is laughing.

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Response to yellowcanine (Reply #5)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 04:09 PM

12. If that's true, he might be a non-birther making fun of the birthers

Irresponsible, but not necessarily malicious.

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Response to democrattotheend (Reply #12)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 04:33 PM

13. Well the joke will be on him if he loses his job.

I would definitely consider firing him. A copy editor who changes copy to make a joke is not someone you want working at a newspaper. At the least a serious printed mea culpa with his name attached is in order.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 03:17 PM

2. "Poor attempt at humor" yeah, right.

"It was just a joke! Lighten up!"

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 03:19 PM

3. It wasn't a poor attempt at humor

It was deliberate.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 03:20 PM

4. I was a copy editor for 13 years for outdoors magazines,

and I only corrected punctuation, spelling and grammatical errors and never anything to change the tone of the stories I read. This copy editor was definitely in the wrong.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 03:26 PM

6. God. Those birther fuckbuckets have all the relentless, bone-headed persistence of...

...of...I don't know! Somebody help me out here with a metaphor! Those guys are just insanely stupid!...

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Response to Aristus (Reply #6)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 04:05 PM

10. A badger on steroids? nt

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Response to tblue37 (Reply #10)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 04:08 PM

11. Good enough!

Thank you!

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Response to Aristus (Reply #6)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 05:08 PM

15. I like this part!

He tells the paper: “That right-wing notion has been so thoroughly discredited that only Donald Trump and assorted other loonies still cling to it. Neither the AP nor – I hope – The Independent Record belongs in their company.

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Response to Aristus (Reply #6)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 07:02 PM

18. Maggots? Piranhas? Leeches? Chickens running around with their heads cut off?

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 03:47 PM

7. SURPRISE SURPISE

 

This little paper has TWO copy editors!!! I guess it is time to hire a THIRD person to catch mistakes..



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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 03:51 PM

8. Since when does any story get the attention of 2 copy editors?

They have 2 proofreaders because they have a lot of text that needs proofing. It's not like they need a fail-safe system here. These are news stories fer Chrissake, not SALT agreements.

The excuse doesn't meet the smell test.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 03:59 PM

9. Disciplined?? I would have fired the editor on the spot for altering the copy

so it contained a deliberate, provable lie.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 05:03 PM

14. HAHA.. Eat you brains out, Orly Taitz.. if there's any cells rattling around

in there.

Thanks Newsjock..

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 06:28 PM

16. The GOOD news is that a former AP staffer complained, then the culprit was disciplined

I read this as a good news story, myself. Here we have a birther trying to slyly slip the lie in -- he gets caught -- and his boss prints the retraction/public apology.

That's one for our side, right enough.

The fact that the boss called it "a poor attempt at humor and a poor decision, but was not intended to be printed in the paper" is just a way of saving face for the paper, not a bad thing. Take note of the last sentence: "Those responsible have been disciplined." I'd hate to be on the receiving end of that chewing-out, and disciplinary actions in the workplace cover a wide range of penalties.

I'd say we're winning.

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 06:35 PM

17. Every time I catch the Billings Gazette using "Democrat" as an adjective I'm on the phone with them.

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Response to ibegurpard (Reply #17)

Wed Nov 21, 2012, 04:00 AM

20. Good for you. It makes a difference. I got our local tv news station to stop ...

... referring to the local Planned Parenthood as "an abortion clinic." This was some years ago, and one of their newscasters (a woman, Debby) just kept doing that. Once she had on a group of women who were protesters outside PP and otherwise anti-choice, and in the course of the interview said, "So you're really upset that little babies are being killed?" in this syrupy voice.

Every damned time she'd call PP an abortion clinic I'd phone the viewer comment line and leave a fairly polite message pointing out that abortions are only about 3% or 5% of what PP does, would list their other activities in detail, and so on. The only time I got really heated was that interview, and I demanded to know if Debby couldn't at least pretend to be objective in the name of good journalism.

And you know what? She stopped. And no one else has ever taken it up again.

So you keep on it. We're going to win, even if it's in small increments. The truth matters.

Hekate

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Response to Newsjock (Original post)

Tue Nov 20, 2012, 07:04 PM

19. ...

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