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WHEN SPEED TRUMPS ACCURACY

Google Trends reports “Paul George” was searched by more than two million people. His name is also among the Top 10 searches on Twitter.

George snapped his right ankle against the basket stanchion, breaking both his tibia and fibula in the 4th quarter of  Team USA’s exhibition on Friday night. The nature of the injury made instant news.

The sports media punched the gas, trying to collect as much information as possible. But sometimes being first is a liability. Take a look at this paragraph from the original story posted by USA Today:

USAToday

There are six typos (and a spacing error) in five sentences. How does that happen? is it so important to publish the information that the story doesn’t get spell-checked? Even a quick scan would have picked up a few of these errors which could lead to an editor to take a closer look.

This is an example of what happens when speed replaces accuracy. No disrespect, I am far from perfect. But this is an egregious string of errors that makes the USA Today look incompetent and incredible.

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Comments

  1. Good point. See BJ Fogg’s research on website credibility. Rule #10: “Avoid errors of all types, no matter how small they seem.”

    • Hi Hal – Valid point. As I pointed out, I understand human error. It happens. But when there are multiple typographical errors in a single paragraph, it’s unacceptable. I’d be curious to know what policies and procedures USA Today has in place to minimize errors. Whatever it is, it doesn’t seem to be working. Mr. Fogg’s advice is useful for any journalist (or media outlet) that values its credibility. Thanks for the comment. I appreciate your input.

      Sincerely,

      John

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