The Sarasota Herald-Tribune published a whopper of a story today, revealing the identity of the priest who says he had an inappropriate relationship with a young, now-disgraced Rep. Mark Foley.
As the national media picked up the story, it’s appalling that hardly anyone has actually linked to the Herald-Tribune‘s story.
A WashingtonPost.com story refers to the Herald-Tribune six times in different ways without a link. But I’m picking on the Post since it’s a staff-created story. CNN, MSNBC, the Miami Herald, the St. Petersburg Times, ABC News and Yahoo! News are all guilty as well. Granted, some of these stories are automatically generated by AP, sans link. Still, that’s a pretty important link.
And to add insult to injury, Google News’s algorithm ranks the Herald-Tribune story as the 10th most-important story (at least when I checked at 11:20 a.m.).
I’m far from the first to say it, but we should really be re-examining our linking practices. Saying “so-and-so reported” without the link –especially on such a big story– just doesn’t make sense online, nor is it fair.