Ok, so while longwinded Upworthy-style headlines are in vogue right now, so should be tighter editing. Earlier this week, Erik Wemple reported on an AP memo announcing a move to start “policing” story length. Daily bylines digest stories should be around 300-500 words and top, ‘global’ stories should never exceed 700, unless it’s necessary and still ‘tightly edited.’ I’m all about it. Some reasons managing editor Brian Carovillano wants them shorter?
1) Good stuff is drowning in a ‘sea of bloated, mid level copy.’ I know we’re all supposed to be all about ‘longform,’ but it seems like everything I read these days is at least two paragraphs (or pages, if you’re The New Yorker) too long. One day when I have a free weekend, I’m going to compile my evidence, but for now it remains a hypothesis: I think a lot of us are writing too much to seem more serious and in-depth so as not to appear too beholden to the ‘clickiness’ of the Internet. Yes, we can do serious journalism on mobile and digital-first platforms. But it can also be concise. Read more