Public Editor

March 24, 2014

Two errors, but only one correction

Not all errors are equal. A reader pointed out two in a sports report on reports on the Arnold Palmer Invitational, but only one rose to the level of a separate correction in print.

An eagle-eyed reader caught two errors in today’s Sports Daily section in the print edition:

1. “The Buzz” reports on the Arnold Palmer Invitational — that “Luke” Scott did poorly on Sunday and was not able to retain his lead. I believe the reporter meant to say “Adam” Scott. I don’t know of any Luke Scott.

2. “Daily Data” (for the Arnold Palmer) lists Henrik “Stenso” which should have been “Stenson” — and there was plenty of room for his full name in the list.

Yep — she’s right on both counts. However, only Scott’s name will generate a correction in tomorrow’s paper on Page A2.

Here’s why: The Star’s policy is to correct all errors, except for minor typos and other mistakes that don’t affect comprehension of the story. For a real-life example, I didn’t push for a correction to a single instance of misspelling actress Courteney Cox’ first name as “Courtney.”

Also, today’s error in the “Daily Data” comes in what’s known as agate — listings in fine type. These are some of the items most prone to errors, of course, and The Star’s normal policy is to correct errors by subsequently re-running them in the place they were originally published.

This one, though, isn’t a big enough deal to require that. Nobody would think that “Henrick Stenso” is someone different from Henrik Stenson. If you were to write a correction for every minor clerical error in a publication that’s written on tight deadlines, torn up and redone from scratch the next day, you would run the very real risk of losing the significant errors among the ultimately trivial.

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