Friday, May 22, 2009

There's always someone, somewhere with a big nose who knows

For some reason the Telegraph website decided to mark Morrissey's 50th birthday with a piece that includes the following howlers.

Dr Gavin Hopps of St Andrew's University said the former lead singer of the band The Smiths was not truly appreciated for his literary abilities, despite his fame.

Best known for such songs as 'Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now' and 'Kill the DJ', Morrissey was actually a "bookish" singer-songwriter and a fan of Oscar Wilde, said Dr Hopps.

I could make an obvious and rather boring point about why its a good idea to get people to edit things before they are published; I might even add in passing that Smiths fans are one of those groups that will turn on you if you display a less than reverential - and accurate - attitude towards the object of their affection.

But let me make a more subtle and interesting point. The type of journalist who would be concerned with getting the title of Smiths songs right would be the type to end up as a sub (or actual) editor, of course. However - in my experience - this sort would also be far more likely to be someone who likes The Smiths.

I do not think the media would be improved by getting rid of people who like The Smiths. That it is all.

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