To: People who edit CNN.com
Re: Your brains
Look, I was as big a fan of John Ritter's sensational sitcom acting as the next guy. Also, he was supercreepygreat in Slingblade. But I don't think "doctors being cleared" in his five-years-ago death qualifies as a top-of-the-home-page-with-a-big-photo "DEVELOPING STORY." It sucks that he died, but in the scheme of things, this is not that important to very many people, and--not to nitpick--but it's not developing. It's already developed. Get over your wacky yellow banners and just report the damn news.
Of course, I have to admit your wacky yellow banner got me to pay attention to the story. Which is sort of unfortunate, because you chose to illustrate the article with a photo of a smiling John Ritter. Take a look:
Call me crazy, but when the first two things you see are the bold headline and smilin' John, it sort of makes it look like this dead guy is elated about the jury clearing the doctors who may or may not have hastened his own death. Which he probably isn't/wasn't. (I'm just guessing.)
I understand he was a comic actor and tended to smile a lot, so you were probably limited in your Ritter photo options. And running a shot of him in his postmortem state would not have gone over well. But, maybe a shot of the courtoom scene? His relatives after hearing the news? A retro shot of Joyce DeWitt?
C'mon. Try harder next time.
Oh, but thank you for your diligent, in-depth coverage of Ashley Alexander Dupre's MySpace page. Keep up the good work there.