Pardon my drooling A dream of a 1,000-year camera

Bad newspaper writing

I was perusing the Salt Lake Tribune this morning and had to chuckle after I saw two examples of atrocious writing and editing from today's edition:

  • Barzee's release is sought
    Release sought by whom?

    The story involves defense attorneys' attempts to secure the release of Wanda Barzee, one of Elizabeth Smart's kidnappers. Barzee's been institutionalized as part of an effort to determine if she is (or ever will be) competent to stand trial for her part in the kidnapping.

    A much better headline for this story: "Defense seeks Barzee's release," because that's exactly what the story is about—and it avoids the annoying passive construction.

  • The UHP is targeting speeding in work zones
    How about "UHP targets speeding in work zones"? Fewer words, same meaning, cleaner construction.

    This story also highlights the Tribune's frequent omission of hyphens in adjectival phrases, as in this example from the story's first paragraph:
    Motorists are still driving too aggressively and routinely flouting construction zone speed limits in the Interstate 15 corridor through Salt Lake County.
    (emphasis mine)

There are a few other examples in that story alone, and several others throughout today's edition. It's a daily problem, however. The Tribune's writing and editing are atrocious.