Diving headfirst into mediocrity

Charles Apple laments the death of originality in his slightly snarky and entirely justified critical analysis of dozens of headlines from Thursday morning’s newspapers. Image from apple.copydesk.org.

Charles Apple takes a look at some of the sucktastic headlines that came out of Wednesday’s Obamney rendezvous.

The golden age of newspaper headlines is over. Even under the best of circumstances, copy editors would have just a few minutes to pull off a hat trick following a presidential debate. Wednesday’s ended after 10:30, which is usually well after the deadline for most newspapers’ first edition.

Now that so many newspapers have laid off their copy desks and/or consolidated their editing functions, I have no idea who’s writing the headlines or how much we should trust their abilities. (God knows, newspapers’ Web headlines are almost uniformly terrible.) I suspect the task falls to harried metro editors or newsroom n00bs willing to work for what newspapers are now willing to pay, without the benefit of the decades of institutional wisdom that comes with having a strong copy desk. Correct me if I’m wrong.

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