The Washington Post changes terrible headline

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The headline above was published this morning by The Washington Post at 11:05 AM as seen in the timeline.

An hour later (7PM Beirut/12PM US EST) I tweeted my thoughts:

An hour (and around 60 retweets) after that, at 1PM (US EST), the headline was changed:

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There is no explanation for this change. But the paper’s developers even changed the URL from:

 

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to:

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Basically, this means the old story no longer exists online and clicking on the old URL will redirect you to the new story, and new headline.

So what motivated the change? Did the Post editors realize mass killing of Muslims could and should also alarm non-Muslims? Did they see my tweet or did they come to their own conclusion? We’ll probably never know, but not explaining the change seems a bit problematic to me–the idea that a major news organization can just erase its mistakes, instead of think them over. (The same thing happened when I did a post that changed a New York Times headline about a year ago.)

In any case, I am glad I took a screenshot and I urge you to do the same when you see something online that doesn’t seem right. Otherwise there may be no proof that it ever existed.

RIP to the victims: 19-year-old Razan, 21-year-old Yusor and 23-year-old Deah.

***

Thanks to Jim Clancy for tweeting the original story, which led me to read it.