AP's Changing Headlines Updating News or Revising Spin
by Pamela Drew, Newsvine
There is no doubt that the news business by its very nature requires that information constantly changes. The whole idea is to update reports to reflect how conditions and change over time and how new information or expert perspectives can impart another viewpoint.
That's a fact but everything that is reported doesn't need to be constantly revised. Take the AP story now on the front page of Newsvine. That had as it's headline when I first read and commented, "Red Cross Reports Situation Deteriorating in Baghdad." Okay, that should be a fairly static item and the first comment was rightly aimed at recent claims by McCain when touring the market place.
I was recently reminded that a good journalist, which apparently I am not, leads with the point of the article and fills in with fact. So the lead is the point of the story and the facts build from there. Granted my style is rambling and and opinionated byt we're talking about the Associated Press not a blogger like me.
What in tar-nation justifies a group of professionals, who are supposed to know all the rules to justify taking a headline story about the Red Cross report of conditions and changing it to this of all things. "Iran May Be Helping Iraqis Build Bombs" ? That isn't even in the same realm of relevance as a headline focus of a story. If it's about building bombs, write that from the get go, don't you think?
How did anyone in the "news" department sign off on that kind of a revision, as something other than outright spin? Mind you the link to the article that I will stick below may be changed, yet again by the time you get to it. Not only does changing the story in a situation that is static, try to make the comments seem irrelevant, what is the point of calling it news? When items like a Red Cross report that are historic facts need to be changed as the day goes on what is stable as reporting?
Never-mind the fact that when the US invaded, all the weapons stores by Saddam were left unguarded and disappeared. More than likely the "enemy" had a big hand from Uncle Sam before anyone else ever had a chance to jump in. Do these newsiness items just think the whole world has the collective memory of fruit flies or are they just so entrenched in their own ecomaginary view that they believe that rewriting fact makes it change?
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