The Boston.com Mystery

Yesterday with the help of an emailer, I highlighted an article on Boston.com by Bob Ryan that contained 15 incorrectly spelled words. What seemed at first to simply be a sloppy effort by a proofreader has instead developed into a mystery that seems to have no easy solution.

Here’s what we know:

  • Bob Ryan has been turning good clean work into the copy desk for 36 years now. He’s a favorite of theirs because they don’t have to do too much work on his articles.
  • Most of the spelling errors were of the omitted letter, missed keystroke variety, not simply poor spelling.
  • Ryan swears that the errors that appeared in the online version were NOT in his original copy that he filed with the Globe.
  • Where the errors in the article that appeared on Boston.com came from is a mystery.
  • The article that appeared in the hard copy of the newspaper did not have the errors that were in the online version.
  • 24 hours after posting the erroneous article, Boston.com replaced the column with a later completely different version written later by Ryan, which does not contain errors, but they put the new column at the very same URL as the old one had been.
  • The Globe sports copy desk is acknowledged as being top-notch. They did their job in the newspaper edition, and are thus not at fault here.

So what the heck happened? How did that article, with all the typos, make it up to the website and stay there all day? Was it deliberate? Carelessness? A technical issue?

A few other links from today…Check out the Patriots blogs from Mike Reiss, John Tomase and the Projo for updates on today’s sessions at Patriots minicamp. Tomase’s blog entry from yesterday also has a couple amusing lines from yesterday’s Patriots golf outing.

Mike Fine analyzes the Red Sox pitching staff. Maureen Mullen in the Brockton Enterprise has a look at Red Sox third base coach DeMarlo Hale.