Open Letter to #Media on Headline Writing

Posted Aug 9 2018, 9:45 pm in , , , , , , ,

Dear Journalists and Editors,

I get it. It’s a numbers game. You need clicks, you need eyeballs, you need traffic to stay alive in this perpetual news-cycle society we created with our smartphones and social networks. I sympathize. 

But I’m pissed off about something. 

I’m mad at ABC News for this: 







And I’m mad at Sports Illustrated for this: 






Pissed off at USA Today, too: 






And the Daily News:







Brock Turner is famous — or infamous — for one thing and one thing only. He sexually assaulted an unconscious woman and then served only a few months of time for that crime. 


He’s NOT famous for the school he attended. Nor is he famous for his swim team participation. 

He committed a crime. So why is it any time the media covers him, he’s alway called the Stanford Swimmer? Someone needs to explain this to me. 

Take a look at this one: 








The Sun get this one right — calls David Berkowitz a “Serial Killer.” 


And this one gets it right, too: 






Fox News calls Mark David Chapman “John Lennon’s Assassin” — Come on, folks — if Fox News gets this right, the rest of you have no possible excuse. 

I demand to know why professional journalists and editors are unable to call Brock Turner what he is: Convicted Sexual Predator Brock Turner. 


Here’s my theory: he’s a nice white boy from a nice white family. Nice white boys don’t get labels like ‘rapist’ or ‘sexual predator,’ right? You all still want to villify his victim for having the gall to go to a party, to have the nerve to get drunk. You’re trying to make this HER fault and it’s not.

He decided. He chose to help himself to her body. He never got consent. You know what that sounds like? Uh, RAPE. That’s what it sounds like. 


And that’s why I’m in a rage. CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS, AP, Sports Illustrated, you all are doing your level best to dilute Brock Turner’s crime, to make him seem harmless and befuddled and maybe even naive. In other words, you are trying your damndest to portray HIM as the victim, rather than the perpetrator.

You are doing a huge disservice to Brock Turner’s victim and should all turn in your press passes. 

This man is guilty of a crime. The only reason he is a blip on your story radars is because of his crime. So shouldn’t the crime be in the headline, as it is when covering serial killers and pop star assassins?

Damn right it should be. 

Do better, media. Stop excusing rape. 

1 Comment


One response to “Open Letter to #Media on Headline Writing”

  1. Sexual assault survivor says:

    I can’t agree more! This is a slap in the face to each and every sexual assault survivor and victims! How dare they post stupid headlines that awe poor baby the rich little white boy. But insulate the victim has “ruined” his life and potential swimming career.
    I am sickened at thier ignorance and stupid headlines. Brock is a damn scum bag who deserved what he got! He wants a lesser sentence? I laugh at that. Because the sentence he bestowed upon his vicitim is LIFE! Don’t drop the soap Brock!