Blog 3: Editorial Content

Editing mistakes can damage the credibility or impact of your message or product.

“The two signature characteristics of digital media are speed and compression: Make it fast and keep it short” wrote Leighton Walter Kille on The value of editing in the digital age. “This goes for everything from Twitter all the way up to long-form journalism, which has withered at traditional news outlets as market pressures have increased, resources have declined and deadlines have multiplied.”

“Standards have shifted as mobile devices have increased in importance, yet even on Twitter, a highly space- and time-constrained medium, concern over grammatical and spelling errors crops up regularly,” said Kille.  (

“Consider the following sentence:  Their may be some mistakes, but we are the ones to place you’re trust with,” writes Natalie Stroud.  “No news organization would print this sentence, and even the least grammatically sensitive people will be taken aback that I’m starting a blog post with it. But in an age of increasing pressure to push news out and keep a fresh digital presence, how important are such mistakes?”

Stroud cites research showing copy editing is good for business.  “Audiences can tell when an article isn’t carefully edited, and it affects their perceptions about the news and their willingness to pay for it,” she noted.  “Digitally savvy young people picked up on editing differences and reacted negatively to unedited content.” (

“Solid writing must reign as the most important skill for those working in the media and communications industries today, especially amid the digital revolution,” said Allan Richards a professor at Florida International University.  “In recent years, we have increasingly heard the same refrain from editors, public relations directors and recruiters demanding that students possess a variety of digital skills.  But now – suddenly – it’s as if they have come full circle. More and more I am hearing those same editors, directors and recruiters say: “Yes, teach them technical skills, but please teach them how to write.”  (

“Editing online content is crucial to the success of the medium, whether it is a website or a blog” pointed out Carolyn Cohn, chief editor of CompuKol.

“Your website design may be innovative and cutting edge, you may have an extraordinarily perfect product or service, you might have a very appealing price and a wealth of information. However, if the way in which you communicate all you have to offer suffers from mediocre editing, you will not be able to make the impact that you are trying to achieve.”

She noted that customers need to trust a business with a site that is credible and professional.  “If there are mistakes in your content, your customers will lose confidence in your business. Many potential customers are skeptical about the Internet marketplace in general and if a visitor finds errors in your content, they may wonder if you are legitimate and serious about what you are offering.”  (

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