We looked at the responsibilities of a Sub-Editor in our Digital Journalism class and later explored how to implement these ourselves. Briefly, ‘subbing’ involves making an article suitable for the reader of a publication. The process of sub-editing includes reading through an article a number of times. On the first read-through you would read the article as a reader would to get a general feel for it. The second read-through involves correcting key information, such as facts, names, quotes, dates, stats, spelling and grammar. On the third read-through you would correct the structure, focusing on the paragraphs to make sure they are in the inverted pyramid format and contain only one key idea each. The fourth read-through is used to tighten the copy to the required word or character limit, removing extraneous adjectives, phrases and words, and ensuring there is a good mix of long and short sentences. The final read-through would be very similar to the first, ensuring that the piece is now fit for purpose and publishable. We were then required to tackle a recent non-sub-edited article on the revival of The Stone Roses. You can see my final edit in the blog Sub-Editing Task – The Stone Roses. Writing and editing articles is something I have not done in the past, but I can see some similarities with essay writing. The ideas and techniques we have looked at so far have been fine and the only one I haven’t been sure about is the ‘inverted pyramid’. That was just a problem with terminology as I have used a similar system called the 5 W’s.

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