Good, Bad, and Ugly

Reader reaction to Reuters news

Russian alcohol deaths…

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Alcohol kills over half of Russians in prime-study

MOSCOW, June 26 (Reuters) – Cheap and illicit alcohol kills more than half Russian men and women in their most productive years and the government must act urgently to reverse the trend, a study to be published in The Lancet at the weekend said.

“Excessive alcohol consumption in Russia, particularly by men, has in several recent years caused more than half of all the deaths at ages of 15-54 years,” the Lancet article said.

Both your lead paragraph and your headline have the same error.

Alcohol does not kill half of all Russians in their most productive years. Rather, half of all deaths of Russians in their most productive years are killed by alcohol.

That’s a very important difference. Half of all deaths is a number in the hundreds of thousands; which is very high to be sure. If your paragraph were accurate than tens of millions of Russians would be dying.

Barak and Barack

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Israel to build 50 new homes at West Bank settlement

News of the planned building work emerged hours before Defense Minister Ehud Barak left for the United States for talks aimed at narrowing a rift with Washington over settlements.

He will meet President Barack Obama’s Middle East envoy, George Mitchell, in New York on Tuesday, Barak’s office said.

Not a former colony?

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ArcelorMittal says delays Liberia iron ore mine

ArcelorMittal is a key investor in the poor former British colony, whose President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf has made attracting foreign investment into its natural resources a centrepiece of her efforts to rebuild the country after a 1989-2003 civil war.

Liberia was not a former British colony. Please correct your reporter’s mistake in this story.

Uncovered news?

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Pelosi in public dispute with CIA over interrogation

WASHINGTON, May 14 (Reuters) – The top Democrat in the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday got into a public dispute with the CIA over what she knew about harsh interrogation techniques in 2002 in the latest twist in a Washington political firestorm.

I logged into your news site to find information concerning Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and the CIA controversy.

The wrong tax?

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Implications of Japan opposition leader quitting

Former party leader Katsuya Okada, often cited as a frontrunner, has in the past favoured a hike in the three percent sales tax to fund bulging social security costs, a move Ozawa had ruled out for now.

I’d like to report a factual error.  Your article mentions a ”hike in the three percent sales tax to fund bulging social security costs.”

Incident in The Netherlands

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You report dozens of roadside bombings in Iraq or Afghanistan; yet if something terrible happens with one of your biggest allies, Holland, on one of their biggest holidays: Queen’s Birthday, you report nothing…

B. S.

Not guilty. We reported plenty. We had evolving text, photos, video and slideshows about that story all day long.

Don’t tinkle with my freedoms…

Singapore says new law will prevent meeting disruption “But if the government wants to tinkle with individual freedom and democracy to an oppressive level it will actually become the source of public order problems.”
Did Legislator Sylvia Lim of the opposition Workers’ Party really say ‘tinkle?

Greenwood

I’m told that was an accurate quote, although she probably meant “tinker.” Since most of our readers are not familiar with Singapore English, or Singlish, it would have been more useful to paraphrase the quote or clarify the word: GBU Editor

No hostages killed?

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Somali militants fire at U.S. lawmaker

So far, pirates have generally treated hostages well, sometimes roasting goat meat for them and even letting them phone loved ones. The worst violence has been the occasional beating. No hostages are known to have been killed by pirates.

This statement is false.

On May 28, 2007, a Chinese crewman held hostage of the hijacked vessel FV Ching Fong Hwa 168, was executed by Somali pirates.

Bloody assaults?

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Somali pirates hijack Greek-owned ship

Some fear the bloody assaults by Washington and Paris to free their hostages may raise the risk of future bloodshed. The pirates have vowed to take revenge on U.S. and French citizens. Everyone, including the U.S. government and military acknowledge that the growing problem of piracy off the cost of Somali requires more than a military solution. But to characterize a carefully considered rescue mission, made possible by expert training and extraordinary oversight as a “bloody assualt” fails to accuratetly report what happened.

Let us not forget that the pirates are the criminals here, and that every attempt was made to reason with them prior to this action.

The Gulf, again…

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Lamprell’s profit rises but dividend slashedLONDON, March 30 (Reuters) – Lamprell, an oil and gas services company in the Arabian Gulf, posted higher full-year profit, but slashed its final dividend by 74 percent citing difficult market conditions.I was reading a news article on your site and I came across the word “Arabian Gulf.” For thousands of years the body of water between Iran and the Arabian peninsula has been called the Persian Gulf. It’s an absolute disgrace to see politics used in such a fashion. Purposefully changing the name of the Persian Gulf is absolutely unbelivable. Journalists aren’t supposed to be politicians. N.R.That was an error. Our style on that body of water is simply The Gulf, with neither Persian nor Arabian attached: GBU Editor

The Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS Hartford is underway in the Gulf, March 20, 2009. REUTERS/U.S. Navy photo/Handout

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