1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Is this lead misleading?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by slappy4428, Oct 3, 2011.

  1. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Saw this over the weekend as a follow -up story....

    "John James wanted to kick back, relax and stick a fork into a home cooked meal Saturday night while his Podunk U players rested.

    "The first-year coach might have scrambled for the Pepto Bismol after he watched Big College U dismantle Next State U with a XX-YY whipping."

    However nowhere in the story does it have verification from James that was what he did. I realize there's a certain bit of license here, but am I the only one who finds that misleading when the writer paints a picture that was indeed what the coach did without anything to back it up? John James could have gone to a titty-bar for all the writer knew...
  2. The only part the writer claims Coach James actually did was watch the game. Doesn't say he watched the whole thing, even. The first graf, what he wanted to do, doesn't say he did that. Says he wanted to. So I guess it doesn't bother me much.
  3. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    I don't like it.

    On the first part, unless the coach told you that, why make up what he wanted to do. Also "stick a fork into" has a whole other connotation, so unless you are trying to evoke that, you should avoid it.

    On the second, I might have said the video should come with a side order of Pepto Bismol, to get that upset stomach thing in there without guessing what the coach might have done.

    Also, don't like the word "scrambling" unless it was intentional because the quarterback was running for his life. In that case, I would have said he likely was scrambling for the Pepto watching NEXT STATE U's QB get sacked seven times.
  4. JimmyHoward33

    JimmyHoward33 Well-Known Member

    Without seeing the rest of the story, I'm assuming John James' team is playing Big College U this week and this is a preview type thing?

    So the writer probably goes on to quote John James about Big College U. So who's to say that some kind of off color not exactly quotable "I was sick watching that Sat night thinking how're we gonna deal with that" wasn't talked about in the course of that interview? If the writer spoke to Jones, there's not much basis for the assumption that he ran with this picture with nothing to back it up.
  5. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    How did he know he wanted to? He might have wanted to take his wife to the movies, but without later verification we'll never know.
  6. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    But how do you know he didn't ask the coach "What are you doing for the game?" And he said "I'm going to sit down, relax, and eat a huge meal."
  7. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    You ever try to agree on a movie to see with your wife? Doubtful.
  8. Matt Stephens

    Matt Stephens Well-Known Member

    I'm with IJAG here. Based off the lead, I'd have to assume the writer asked the coach and that was his answer
  9. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    The coach is coach of a team 200 miles away. And if he asked him, why wouldn't he use a quote to describe what he saw in Big College U's defense.
  10. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    Well, the easy way to indicate that is to say, "Coach so-and-so said he wanted to kick back ....."
  11. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    Well how in the fuck am I supposed to know it's 200 miles away?

    And "Coach so and so said" as a lead-in to a paraphrasing is almost always unnecessary and clunky.
  12. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    Yeah, except the question here is whether he was indeed paraphrasing, imagining or just hungry.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page