Editorial: Reading The Whole Story

Micromedia File Photo

Something rather comical happened today in the ol’ newsroom. A story came across our desks regarding another Jersey Shore based business closing their doors in the coming weeks. No, this isn’t a good thing and no, that’s not the funny part of this tale.

Where the humor comes in was how both the story and the headline threw me for a complete loop where I had to read it several times before realizing what was actually closing.

The headline: Freehold Barnes & Noble Starbucks Location Closing

My first thought was oh, how terrible. Another book store closing. The one in Howell is in the process of closing, the Borders bookstore in Freehold closed a few years back and recently, we lost Toys R’ Us, Sears of Toms River, Kmart is going next and so is Howell’s Record Store.

Upon further inspection, I realized it isn’t the bookstore closing at all. It’s the STARBUCKS connected to the Barnes & Noble in Freehold.

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I chuckled about it and mentioned my folly to the writer of the piece who then questioned her own judgment on how it was worded – but on the third reading, all seemed fine.

Then, we posted it on social media. Well, the response was similar to my first thought. Many people were posting about how they will miss their time at the store and sharing memories. A few actually realized soon after posting that the store wasn’t closing but the coffee shop.

This begs an important question. Why do you think this happens? Are we all in such a hurry to read a story or to judge a headline that we fail to see the content being presented? I’m not here to judge as I made the same error.

What do you think? We are all in such a hurry with our daily lives and smart devices and screens. Could it be that our brains are quick to process words and they come out wrong in that translation?

Occasionally, we get a colorful post from readers giving spoilers in a social media post saying “hey, I’ll save you the click. Here’s the gist of the story.”

Sometimes we have some social media followers asking questions about the story when all they really have to do is read it for the answers.

What do you think?

We are anxious to hear your feedback.

Jason Allentoff
Vice President/COO
Micromedia Publications/Jersey Shore Online