Good, Bad, and Ugly

Reader reaction to Reuters news

No longer Western?


Tsunami smashes Pacific islands, over 100 feared dead

SYDNEY, Sept 30 (Reuters) – A series of tsunamis smashed into the Pacific island nations of American and Western Samoa killing possibly more than 100 people, some washed out to sea, destroying villages and injuring hundreds, officials said on Wednesday.

Several of your articles about the tsunami refer to “Western Samoa.”

This name is no longer in use. The correct name of the nation is simply “Samoa.” Your own FACTBOX page (linked from the main story) even mentions this!


It seems something of a mystery why our style during this running saga has switched back and forth between Samoa and Western Samoa for stories, photo captions and graphics. The style is under review, and we will settle on one. Watch this space: GBU Editor

Veiled slander?


Honduras talks start, police disperse protesters

Foreign ministers and the head of the Organization of American States are overseeing the highest-level dialogue in the coffee-growing nation since Zelaya was bundled into exile at gunpoint three months ago, but a solution to the crisis seemed distant.

In your article today, I believe your comment about Honduras being a coffee growing nation was a veiled slander that typically reads ¨Banana republic¨.

Grammar in Olympics story…


Chicago go out in first round of 2016 Olympics voting
COPENHAGEN, Oct 2 (Reuters) – Chicago were eliminated after the first round of voting for the 2016 Olympics host city.

Correct grammer would be Chiicago WAS eliminated. The grammer in the headline is also atrocious: “Chicago go out…” What does that mean?

Capital vs. Capitol…

Court to hear gay divorce in Texas, despite gay marriage ban

The District of Columbia city council voted on May 5 to recognize same-sex marriages performed in states where those unions are legal, even although gay marriages cannot be conducted in Washington D.C., the U.S. capitol. You mean “capital” not “capitol.”

Yes. A number of readers pointed this out to us. They shouldn’t need to. This building in the photo is a capitol. We corrected: GBU Editor.

Do we need a cliché czar?


U.S. ‘pay czar’ Feinberg using formulas, not caps

China climate czar sees carbon targets “soon”

Even Miss Venezuela can’t escape economic crisis

“I’ve asked Osmel to be a bit stricter choosing 20 girls, so we only have the best,” Riviera added, referring to local beauty “czar” Osmel Sousa, who prepares the competitors.

Google Plans New Mirror For Cheaper Solar Power

“We’ve been looking at very unusual materials for the mirrors both for the reflective surface as well as the substrate that the mirror is mounted on,” the company’s green energy czar Bill Weihl told Reuters…

A cult?


Indonesia’s sharia push may scare investors, moderates

Last year, the government imposed restrictions on Ahmadiyya, a minority Muslim cult, following intense lobbying by hardline Muslim groups to have them banned.

I am appalled that in this story the peaceful international Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is described as a ‘cult’.

Unfortunate typo…


Klitschko retains WBC title with Arreola victory

He then burst into teats and apologized to his hometown crowd, who had cheered wildly for him throughout the fight.

Omigosh, he burst into “teats”? Might be time for a gender test on Arreola.

Repost the story?


Gelbart’s colleagues remember “master of masters”

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) – The classic series “M*A*S*H,” the hit movie comedy “Tootsie” and the Tony-winning play “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” are part of the enduring legacy that writer Larry Gelbart left behind when he died September 11 at age 81.

“He was the single funniest human being I’ve ever known as far as being able to make a quip, a repost and make you laugh without using a straight line,” said Carl Reiner…

She’s not that fragile…

Last letter of Mary Queen of Scots appears briefly

EDINBURGH (Reuters Life!) – At 2 a.m. on a frigid February morning in 1587, Mary Queen of Scots sat at her table and penned a last letter before her execution in the great hall of Fotheringhay Castle in the English midlands.

“Tonight, after dinner, I have been advised of my sentence: I am to be executed like a criminal at eight in the morning,” she wrote to her brother-in-law, the king of France.

Not a real Third World War…


South Africa threatens “3rd world war” over Semenya

KLEINMOND, South Africa (Reuters) – South Africa reacted angrily on Friday to a report that tests on its world champion runner Caster Semenya had found she was a hermaphrodite, threatening a “third world war” over the affair.

“I think it would be the third world war. We will go to the highest levels in contesting such a decision. I think it would be totally unfair and totally unjust,” said Sports Minister Makhenkesi Stofile.