Thursday, January 15, 2009

Headline Bloopers

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Headlines can truly get on an editor's nerves. From the too-clever play-on-words, to the blatant mistakes, it seems as though journalists are often too pressured and rushed to get attention, and bad writing is the result. Take for instance:

Vehicle Hits Police Car En Route to Jail
Not very clear who's going to jail, is it? Not important, but it's just the tip of the iceberg in journalism today.

Consider these;

Man Kills Self Before Shooting Wife and Daughter

Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says
No, really?

Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers
Now that's a little harsh, don't you think?

Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over

Miners Refuse to Work after Death
Talk about lazy - whatever happened to good old fashioned work ethic?

Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant
Hmm - does he at least get a five second running head start?

War Dims Hope for Peace
Ya think?

If Strike Isn't Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile
No - no way.

Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures
Such remarkable insight.

Enfield ( London ) Couple Slain; Police Suspect Homicide !
Gee - Sherlock Holmes would be proud.

Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges
Mmm - I don't know, I think I'd feel safer with duct tape.

Man Struck By Lightning: Faces Battery Charge
What a re-VOLTing development!

New Study of Obesity Looks for Larger Test Group
Obese people aren't large enough already?

Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft
Maybe NASA should consider a different diet for them?

Kids Make Nutritious Snacks
Should've been taken from The Martian Hunter's Gazette, maybe?

Local High School Dropouts Cut in Half
So that's where magicians get their stunt recruits.

Hospitals are Sued by 7 Foot Doctors
Well if they lose the lawsuit, they could probably make a lot of money in the NBA.

And get this one-

Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead!
Now that's journalism at its most insightful best!
Submitted by our resident editorial comedian, Marvin D. Wilson who wins the award for funniest post ever on this blog.

If you think you can beat any of these headlines, please leave it in the comments!


  1. This is hilarious! Esp. like the one about children making good snacks.

  2. I would accuse you of making up some of those headlines, but, alas, I know I would be wrong.

    Deadlines tend to limit your ability (and, certainly, your time) to think.

  3. Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over - This made it's way to print?! Lol! And I though misspelled words were bad.

  4. Those are priceless. I had to stifle my laughter on the train.

    Morgan Mandel

  5. What a collection! Best laugh I've had in days!

  6. How hysterical! The panda headline reminds me of something a friend of mine once said. She was talking about her and her husband's plans to start a family and said, "I hate my OB/GYN, but if I'm going to have a baby, I guess it'll have to be with him."

  7. I can't even breathe, I'm laughing so hard again. I almost died when I was editing this piece. Betcha anything it's our most popular post so far. We all need to laugh. Go invite everyone in the world for a good guffaw.


  8. One of my favorite posts here so far! A whole new take on "ripped from the headlines." I'm telling everyone I know to read this today.

  9. How funny! Thanks for providing a good laught today!

  10. What a hoot! Thanks for this. Needed a laugh.

  11. They say laughing is great exercise, so thanks to you I've had quite the workout!

    Jane Kennedy Sutton
    Author of The Ride

  12. I've seen them all before and they still make laugh til I hurt.


The Blood-Red Pencil is a blog focusing on editing and writing advice.