Thursday, April 08, 2004

The Laurel Outlook gives an in-depth account of how the neighboring daily managed to move Laurel to Delaware. Gazette Editor Steve Prosinski points out that the false history appeared in an "advertorial" rather than a news section but admits that that the distinction is likely to be lost on most readers.

How well I know. I once edited a daily that rejected a wedding announcement because it was submitted after our deadline. The disappointed family bought an ad that eventually wound up in the New Yorker under the headline, if memory serves, "Social notes from all over." I have forgotten most of the errors the short article contained, but I do remember the featured music: "Yazoo, Joy of Mass Desiring." I think New Yorker readers, sophisticated though they might be, also missed the distinction that the errors were generated by the ad department, not editorial.

The Outlook also editorializes that the Gazette should perhaps rethink its policy of trying to suck advertising dollars out of neighboring communities by filling ad pages with bogus stories.

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