John thinks that reporters and their editors (and the corporations that employ them) have the power to shape readers’ perceptions by, for instance, choosing what fact to put first in a story or which expert to quote in what context. But the most powerful tool is the simplest: the headline. Because many people read only that, and many others have their perception of an article shaped by the first words they see, this sentence fragment is frequently as important as everything that comes after.
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