The same critical eye that is applied to the articles needs to be applied in that big eye-catching headline as well.

By Sylvia Stead for the Globe and Mail

In these times of political spin, contradictions, obfuscation and, at times, outright lies, readers expect to see not only the articles, but also the headlines, reflect the truth as best they can.

A British Columbia reader wrote to me this week calling on The Globe to pay closer attention to the big type. This was on a story about BC Premier Christy Clark who accused the New Democrats of hacking her party’s website.

The digital headline says “Christy Clark accuses NDP of hacking Liberal party website, without proof”

That was a good headline, but reader Steve Dodge said the newspaper headline was not. “The paper on my breakfast table has the headline, ‘Clark accuses NDP of hacking attempt,’ and while I see that this has changed in the online edition to include the phrase ‘without proof’ at the end, I still believe this is not good enough. Ms. Clark has made an inflammatory, irresponsible accusation, and the Globe and Mail has played into her hands by trumpeting her unsubstantiated claim in the headline, leaving the fact that she has no evidence to a subheading and the first sentence of the story. Certainly the Globe and Mail can do better, and should.”

Continue reading this story on The Globe and Mail website, where it was first published.

Sylvia Stead is the Public Editor of the Globe and Mail.