Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Totally posted

Sometimes, you just have to applaud the stories put together by the New York Post. Of course, most of the time, you're left shaking your head, wondering where exactly they got their definition of "journalism", but one thing you can admit is that they definitely have something of a sense of humor about their writing. After all, when they can write a serious piece about the new Yankees stadium getting cursed because of a Red Sox t-shirt in the foundation, you know you've got people that want to have fun.

And yet, sometimes, they go a little overboard with the fun. Take, for example, the article that caught our eye today. It's the story of a lottery winner, who tried to be a little sneaky about how he went to accept his prize. After donning a disguise, and using a marker to give himself a goatee, he went to claim his winnings. As it turns out, being relatively anonymous was pretty important to him, especially because he was also using it as a way to keep his mother from being harassed.

Well, of course the NYPost was there. After all, this was a fairly large prize won, and it would be remiss of a newspaper just a few steps above supermarket tabloid wasn't there to cover the story. The problem that we're seeing?

In order to cover their story, the NYPost printed the guy's name, along with a photo of his disguise. They mention his desire for privacy and anonymity, but then make a point of name-checking him every few paragraphs. Seems like leaking the name out might not be the best move, when he's looking to maintain a low profile.

Of course, people could think that we're being hypocritical. After all, we're also giving this story some more legs (although our readers aren't the type to go and harass lottery winners... we think). But we're not mentioning anyone by name. To learn more, there is a need to link through, and, since this story's been picked up by a few news sites, we're fairly certain that our addition to this is minimal.

The only reasons that we can think of with regards to why the NYPost published names along with the story are that a) too few people actually read the paper to make the name-dropping matter; b) the writers are hoping to later be known as "The Woodward and Bernstein of the Lottery"; or c) they couldn't get rights to a Bat-Boy story from the Weekly World News.

As for our winner, we wonder if he might be interested in picking up "Conductor Hero". At the very least, the photos seem similar.

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