8.10.2006

"4 penguins perish in truck accident; octopus uninjured"

There was a news article on MSNBC about a freak truck accident involving a zoo transport which killed several exotic fish and a few penguins. This is sad. Death is sad. That being said....

The headline makes me want to giggle everytime I read it! I'm sorry, but it does. How can you read that and not think things like: "Was the octopus wearing his seatbelt?" "Which penguin was driving?" I would like to find out who wrote this headline and ask them if they read it first. Another fine example of why I believe that all headlines, signs, advertising etc. should be read by a panel of thirteen year old boys first, if any of them laugh, re-write it.

This was obviously a serious accident and involved human drivers and the loss of life, even though it was animal life....perhaps a better headline would have been, "Freak accident kills exotic wildlife." or "Zoo Transport Suffers Freak Accident"

It makes you wonder if the journalist that wrote this piece took it seriously, or if they sort of blew it off because none of the human occupants died. I believe that if one of the human occupants of the truck had been killed, the headline would have been far less cavalier.

4 comments:

knightjorge said...

I read that and thought that you were getting ready to tell a joke. Seriously.

viciousrumours said...

So you get what I mean. It just doesn't convey any kind of seriousness at all. It does kind of sound like a one-liner, doesn't it?

Lord Aerthos Pendragon said...

Being a journalism major, I'll shed my $0.02 of light on the headline issue.

My assumption is that the journalist was aiming for something between humour and seriousness. It's not something that will make front page because there were no human lives lost. However, it's not something that is completely humourous because animal lives were lost. So s/he picks a headline that can be both, depending on what the reader notes first--either the loss of life (serious) or the kinds of animals mentioned (humor).

viciousrumours said...

I can see the logic in that.