At the Wednesday coffee, editors confirmed the consensus from an earlier discussion: Reporters need a better script when making that call to grieving families.
Katherine will be in charge of creating it.
One example from yesterday suggests the need for a second script. It would start this way: “I’m Tom from the Missourian calling about a possible error in the obituary information submitted to the funeral home.”
Why? Because we’re going to call when there’s bad info on the obit. In yesterday’s case, it wasn’t clear whether a spouse had a hyphenated last name or kept her maiden name. We guessed, because it’s the only thing we could do. The family was called — even though there was a “run as-is” note on the obit — but hung up before we could even get the question out.
Now, there may be nothing we can do in that case. I hope a script — one that works for copy editors, ACEs as well as reporters — might help.