Copy ReadingPosted: November 16, 2008
from the page:
Not infrequently the copy reader keeps two or even three stories moving in sections to the composing room at the same time. While he is waiting for an "add " to a fire story, he may edit the first installment of a dispatch from Washington, prepare an " Insert Murder " and in the intervals write heads and take care of several small items. The example is extreme, but it illustrates the condition of stress under which the copy reader often works. To seize and retain the main facts of a story, so he can write the head after the copy has left his hands, he must keep his mind keyed up to the highest notch of efficiency. Names above all must be closely watched. A moment’s wandering of the attention may lead to the statement in a headline that Jones killed Smith, when in fact Smith killed Jones. Plainly the day of the irresponsible " Bohemian " in journalism is at an end; the modern newspaper demands clear-headed, alert, dependable workmen.