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This is news?

As soon as I saw the headline Monday on the Tri-City Herald home page, I knew what would be coming next.

The headline: "3 accused of smoking joint next to Richland cop."

I just knew we would get a few comments such as "Why is this news?" or "Wow, it must be a slow news day at the Herald." Sure enough, we got several. In fact, the story has received 47 comments so far. That's a lot for a story on our site.

A few of the comments derided the Herald for even writing and running the story. Then a funny thing happened: A somewhat civil debate on legalizing marijuana broke out, along with a discussion on driving impaired, regardless of whether it is drugs or alcohol. That ended up being the majority of the comments.

And another funny thing happened: This was our top story of the day Monday, with 3,436 page views.

So based on the number of comments and the amount of traffic received: Yes, it was news.

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