MSNBC and Its Ignorant and Misleading Headline

MSNBC erroneously titles their report

Scholars seek to correct ‘mistakes’ in Bible: Experts say they’re looking to publish the authoritative edition of the Old Testament

The fact is, the Hebrew University Bible project has been around for decades! They aren’t ‘seeking to correct mistakes’, they’re doing Hebrew Bible textual criticism of the sort that’s been carried out since the dawn of textual criticism in the 16th century (and before, to be fair).

MSNBC’s sensationalizing headline, misleading at best and just simply ignorant dilettantism at worst, is absurd. The report itself, is however, quite nicely done (apart from the ridiculous undercurrent of ‘scholars are trying to destroy the bible again’ idiocy).

Ugh. With thanks to Tom Verenna for the aneurism.

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6 thoughts on “MSNBC and Its Ignorant and Misleading Headline

  1. somerville61 12 Aug 2011 at 10:47 am

    I don’t read the headline the same way.

    By putting the word mistakes in single quote marks, my initial impression was that the headline writer intended to show the ‘mistakes’ weren’t really errors but differing interpretations or readings of the passages/words being examined – which is what is illustrated in the article.

    Although not noted in several grammar works I have checked online, the use of single quote marks as an indicator for a sarcastic or opposite interpretation of the word(s) enclosed is increasingly common in my experience.


    • Jim 12 Aug 2011 at 10:49 am

      and do you think the general reading public will be so subtle?


  2. Chuck Grantham 12 Aug 2011 at 12:09 pm

    Increasingly I expect the public to do this:

    “Bible, bible. I’ve heard of that. Let me pull out the ole Iphone and see what Wiki says that is.”


    • Jim 12 Aug 2011 at 12:45 pm

      im afraid we’re already there


  3. somerville61 12 Aug 2011 at 12:15 pm

    Many of those under 40 types with their obsession with texting – yes, they would understand the meaning of the single quotes. The language we speak is not the language of the modern ‘texter’


  4. somerville61 12 Aug 2011 at 12:17 pm

    In my previous quote – “meaning” should have been “interpretation”

    I wish we had a Preview before posting capability


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