One of the features of NetNewsWire I like the most is “highlight differences.” With this option switched on, the feed reader compares older and newer versions of a feed and merges them with
ins markup to reveal the changes. Among the feeds I read heavily, BBC News seems to have the most numerous edits. Here are the recent examples from a list of roughly 100 entries:
Members of both houses of theUS Congress reach agreementon the details of President Obama’seconomic stimulus plan.
2/11/09 6:41 pm
Australian officials blame arsonists for fresh firesin Victoria, as a dozenbushfires continue to burnin the state.
2/11/09 9:21 pm
have moved a stepcloser to a simple urine test to distinguish between thebenign and aggressive forms ofprostate cancer.
2/11/09 7:52 am
The numberof jobless people inthe UK is set to pass two million for the first time since 1997 when figures are published later.
2/11/09 5:02 am
Gun battlesbetween suspected drug gang members and troops leave 21 deadin northern Mexico, police say.
2/11/09 5:25 am
The leaders of Israel’s two main parties, Likud and Kadima, both say they have won the country’s
2/10/09 10:59 pm
A 60-dayreview of how well the US copes with relentless cyberattacks has been kicked off by Obama’s security chief.
2/10/09 6:27 am
Some of these edits are factual updates (e.g. adding the “hard fought compromise” quote; replacing “blame arsonists” with “questioning two people”), while others soften the tone of the informational claim (e.g. “1.97 million” versus “set to pass two million”, “thwarts” versus “copes”). Both kinds of changes are made to strengthen the utterance: either by adding factual clauses or by making the tone sound less evaluative, which is to say, more impartial.†
† I’m not saying that the claims are actually impartial. I don’t think they can be.