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Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by ColbertNation, Dec 30, 2006.

  1. ColbertNation

    ColbertNation Member

    I know this is different at different papers, but I wanted some input on the subject. At every paper I've been at, I've been told not to touch quotes (i.e. you type it out exactly how the person said it). And I know that's the official shop answer, but I tinker with quotes all the time. I fix them for grammar, first of all. But many times when I'm taking notes, I don't copy quotes down verbatim. One of my professors (who is considered an expert in libel law) once told me that as long as you get the general meaning across, that's all that's important. Of course, in many cases, verbatim quotes are important, but is it really wrong to change, "I seen the safety out there, but I looked him off, you know, and found Joe open in the end zone," to "I saw the safety, but I looked him off and found Joe in the end zone,"?
  2. Clean them up for grammar, unless you're using their malapropisms to bring out a piece of their character in a feature, e.g. foreign players.
  3. dawgpounddiehard

    dawgpounddiehard Active Member

    Unless they use the word, "malapropism." Then clean it up so readers know what the hell they mean.

  4. fishwrapper

    fishwrapper Active Member

    Irregardless, never use malapropisms.
  5. fishwrapper

    fishwrapper Active Member

    "You've got to be very careful if you don't know where you're going, because you might not get there."
  6. Football_Bat

    Football_Bat Well-Known Member

    One method to correct grammar or clarify the meaning of what the person said is to use the correction or clarification in parentheses (or [brackets], depending on your style.)

    BEFORE: "What do voluntary mean?" asked Hambrick.

    AFTER: "What (does) voluntary mean?" asked Hambrick.
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