Letter: Alarming headline

May 18, 2014 

On the front page of today's Tri-City Herald (Monday, May 12) the largest and most prominent headline says "Glitches arising in health markets." It was placed in the prime readership spot -- top right. And the headline is really black.

That is an alarming assertion. It will encourage many readers to find out more about how bad things are.

In the subhead that follows the main, black headline, it says "Less that 5 percent of people who enrolled in Washington have billing, payment problems." That's a good deal less alarming. We'd like it best if 0 percent of enrollees had problems, but less than 5 percent isn't all that bad for a new program.

So, which headline should folks pay greatest attention to: the scary headline or the subhead that acknowledges a small and limited set of problems?

What was the goal of the headline writer? What is the aim of the Tri-City Herald?

JIM WICKMAN, Pasco

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