The title of this blog post should make the reader say "DUH! Any piece of writing that is going to be submitted for publication (even a blog post) should be edited.
Fact-checking is also extremely important, but that's going to be another blog post.
No one is going to get the lead perfect the first time writing it, and if someone thinks that the lead (first sentence for those who didn't know) written the first time is good enough then that person is incorrect.
When writing an article that just has a direct/summary lead (just answering the who, what, where, when) then maybe the lead doesn't need to be worked on as hard, but for indirect/delayed leads (will be explained later) the lead needs to be worked on.
The first draft of any sort of post (article or blog post, but mostly an article written by a journalist) should not be the only draft done before submitting for publication.
With print journalism there is usually an editor/copy editor that can go through the copy (the draft) and edit it in accordance to the style guide used with that publication (like the AP Style Guide). There are certain universal rules that all style books follow (which again, will be discussed in another blog post). Wow, there are a lot of other blog posts I need to make - or maybe I need to make "pages" so that when there's a "glossary term" that isn't understood by the readers I can just put a link to the page and voila! Or have the pages on the sidebar.. I'll figure that out.
Anyway, if there isn't an editor to go through and look through the copy then that responsibility is left to the reporter/writer. With anything that is published there needs to be editing, because no one ever gets it perfect the first time. To hand in the first draft written of an article is just foolish - sure it may be good enough to be published and well done, but it can always be better.
Checking through a document for grammatical and spelling errors can really help the credibility or the writer and/or publication. Simple spelling errors and grammatical errors really can make the entire post and publication look bad.
Even this post will be read through thoroughly and edited, re-worded, etc. before the "PUBLISH POST" button is clicked. Sure, it might take more time - but it's better to look something over and be able to be proud to have your name attached to that piece.
As an editor (I have been a Managing Editor and right now I am newly appointed as the Executive Editor for Zennie62.com) it is very hard not to read through any piece of writing without judging based off the errors made. Proofreading should always be done as well, but that goes without saying...or maybe it doesn't.
It's just disheartening to look through posts on CNN.com (or God forbid in an issue of Newsweek) and see errors that could easily be prevented if there was more time spent editing. If it is an emergency story that needs to be out there IMMEDIATELY then it is understandable as to why there wouldn't be as much editing done (like for a web story), but afterwards the post should be edited.
It is just a huge pet peeve to see no effort going into these news stories. Effort in getting interviews and actually writing and doing the research is another story, but after the entire thing is written the person should be proud of the work and want to edit it to make sure there were no mistakes.
More on editing later.
Now it's time to edit this post and click the "PUBLISH POST" button.