Virginia Newspaper Apologizes for the Word "Fucking" in Kids' Section

Today's Staunton News Leader, a Gannett newspaper based in Virginia, came with a little surprise for the children. In a "Kid's Corner" sidebar buried in the weather section, the caption accompanying a Crayoned drawing included the word "fucking." As in: If you’re a fucking idiot, it can be fun to refer to your draft site as “the war room.” Wait, what?

Virginia Newspaper Apologizes for the Word "Fucking" in Kids' Section

The arbitrary caption is a line of copy pasted directly from The Onion's "Tips For Hosting A Fantasy Football Draft," published last Friday. (See left.) Romenesko points us to the paper's online apology, which specifies that the objectionable section was laid out and submitted by third-party vendor, Accuweather.com.

"The language was not caught by our editors and made it into print," writes executive editor David Fritz. "First of all, we apologize for this getting into the newspaper. Secondly, we'll be working internally and with our vendor to make certain that there's no repeat."

Mistakes like this usually end up in newspapers one of two ways:

1) A disgruntled employee is leaving the company and wanted to see if this extraneous copy would get by the newspaper editors. Usually such a prank would be a lot funnier, so this probably isn't the case.

2) Whoever laid out the page pasted his/her clipboard text as place-holder caption and never bothered to insert the correct text. This is why graphic designers use TK or Latin passages, not random sentences from The Onion, because place-holder text is known to slip into print.

In any case, could've been worse?

[Romenesko // the kind of photo you'd expect in Kid's Corner via Shutterstock]

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