Sunday, March 04, 2007

Regret the Error - the Book

Craig Silverman, proprietor of the always funny-if-it-weren't-so-sad site Regret the Error, has a book deal through Penguin Canada and Union Square Press. The press release on Silverman's site describes it thusly: REGRET THE ERROR: How Media Mistakes Pollute and Endanger the Press, an Eats, Shoots and Leaves for the media-centric, with a foreword by blogger Jeff Jarvis.

Of more interest to copy editors is what Silverman expands on later (and forgive him the use of the word du jour, crowdsourcing and the ungainly, nonparallel construction of the first sentence that follows):

The book will also look at the death of newspaper proofreaders, the emergence and decline of magazine fact checking, and will offer suggestions for how the press can meet a higher standard of accuracy. ...

Even more importantly, I'm asking for your participation and contributions. As indicated above, one of the chapters will look at ways the press can increase its level of accuracy. I have spent a lot of time researching current methods in use within newsrooms, along with other inventive strategies I plan to introduce. But there is no way I can come up with all of the best recommendations on my own.

So: I'm asking all of you who work in newsrooms that have instituted novel ways of preventing, correcting or tracking errors to please write in and share your story. For those of you not in the profession, I'd still love to hear your ideas. I will of course offer you full credit for the idea and will collect the submissions for public viewing on this site. (I'll honor requests to keep your name private.)

For those familiar with the term, this is very much meant to be an experiment in crowdsourcing. Basically: you know more than I do. I'm hoping you'll take a few minutes to share your knowledge and help create a definitive collection of error prevention, correction and tracking strategies.
This actually sounds like a project ACES should have thought of (our bad -- and I say "our" since I am a member of that organization). But I'd propose that ACES look at what Silverman's doing and figure out how the premier organization for copy editors can build on that.

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