Monday, January 08, 2007

Straight facts

Ed links to a post that dissects (and mocks) the "new jouralism." It's a piece well worth reading, but I was most struck by this reader comment: "I'm willing to forgive a lot of grammar and punctuation mistakes - as long as the facts are straight."

True enough, I suppose, but not often found in the real world. In my experience, the traits that make people good at grammar and punctuation also make them good at getting facts straight. I don't trust sloppy writers to have straight facts. I may have known an exception or two over the years, but damn few.

4 comments:

cece said...

I have a better one, of my own making of course: "I can remain reasonable, as long as you remain rational."

Chuck Rightmire said...

Actually, David, one of the best reporters I ever worked with wrote with numerous misspellings and typos. But every name was spelled right and every fact was correct. And he was ripsnorter on covering stories. A good writer is frequently not a good proof reader because the good writer often reads what he wrote and not what is on the page.

David said...

Chuck, I'm not saying there are no reporters like that, just that they are very rare. Can you name a second one?

Chuck Rightmire said...

David, there were several of them that I worked with in the old hot-type, good proofreader days. Sam was the most noticeable, but Bill and Ed sometimes had trouble with spelling, but never of names and the facts were always right. Today's spell checkers sometimes make people careless.