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Who the hell writes this stuff for MSN? Honestly, they must be stoned out of their minds! This whole story seemed as if someone on MSN took the story from a Chinese newspaper, used Bing translator, and posted without reviewing the article.


The story itself is really sad. The author tries to describe a young woman’s murder that took place as her boyfriend watched and listened via webcam.

Apparently, a man, Brian Dickson, knocked on her door as she was webcamming with her boyfriend. She opened the door and chatted with him, but (I guess) when he tried to hug her, she refused to reciprocate. Then he pushed her to her bed and forced himself on her. (I guess) Her boyfriend clearly saw the conflict to the point where they were on her bed; although, he heard her screaming, “No” and banging sounds throughout the transgression. After awhile the noises stopped and the man, naked from the waist down, walked in front of the webcam and turned off the computer. The police arrested and charged Brian Dickinson who is pleading not guilty but, according to the author, is asking the jury to convict him of manslaughter.


Reading this article was such a headache. I mean you would think that because it is written on a popular website, they would review and edit before posting. But think again!

First off, just look at the title, Trial for Canadian webcam murder suspect begins.
My first thought questioned, “How can you commit a murder through a webcam,” and then I imagined a man sticking his head and arm as he held a knife in his hand into his computer and emerging from a woman’s computer, slaughtered her, and snapping his body back through the screen. I recognize my mind thinks strangely sometimes but the headline is horribly worded! I would have titled it, Victim’s webcam was on as man murders her, Trial begins.

Perhaps it’s my heavy accent which is making this article sound very strange but I swear there is just something off about the grammar and just the overall word choices the author utilizes.

For example:

He heard Liu say both in English and Mandarin, “No. No,”Pirraglia said.

Pirraglia is the prosecutor and “he” is her boyfriend, Xian Meng. To me, it just sounds confusing. I would write, Meng reported to Pirraglia that he heard her scream the word, “No. no,” interchangeably in English and Mandarin.

Here’s another example:

Blood could be seen on the floor around her face.

In the context of the paragraph, this sounds very strange to me but it being alone doesn’t sound much better. If you just said this out loud while having discussion, it isn’t a big deal but in an article, come on, you can come up with something better. I just feel like this author was lazy. Another problem is that the author writes, “could be seen.” See, the word “could” should not be used in this particular context. It’s like pointing at the Mona Lisa and saying, “a woman could be seen in the picture.”

I don’t know, but I am not fond of this sentence.

Third example:

Pirraglia said there is DNA evidence that says the chances that the semen found on Liu’s abdomen and groin area weren’t from Dickson are calculated as one in 2.7 quintillion.

Or the author could have wrote, “Parraglia said forensics calculates there is one in 2.7 quintillion chance the semen found in Liu’s abdomen and groan area was not Dickinson’s.” This example reminds me of a post I recently read about not treating your readers dumb; “you don’t need to overstate anything.” Secondly, DNA Evidence cannot possibly “say” anything. The evidence is based off of DNA samples collected. Lab scientists calculate the chances of the DNA being his. DNA evidence proves there is one in 2.7 quintillion possibility the semen found on Liu’s abdomen and groan was not from Dickinson.


This article reports the onset of a trial. Yet, it clearly is redundant, the author writing, “Pirraglia said,” nine times! By the end, I asked myself, “Who is Pirraglia?” This article rather tells me what Pirraglia said at the trial than about the trial itself.

These example may not seem like a big deal and I know I am not reading The Washington Post but to an extent I expect a higher quality from any news stand. Even though the internet is fast paced and every news stand wants to beat the other to the punch, quality in written format drastically is taking a hit. A person who attended and completed high school should write better than this!

If I turned this in as a report to my high school teachers, they would scrutinize and patronize me about all of these little inconsistencies (or in the case of being redundant, too consistent) saying there is no chance in hell I would pass college! I am not perfect and I make a lot of mistakes but I am not writing a post for a news stand (that apparently is missing their editor).

Anyways, I don’t normally rush to judgement but, geez, there is overwhelming, clear evidence against him. I hope to see him convicted but the prosecution should also charge him with rape! This ridiculous; Western countries treat rape (whether the victim is female or male) as a joke! I want to see these people behind bars or in mental wards for a long time! It is never okay to rape someone– ever! There is absolutely no excuse to be ignorant of this law! And I could go on and on about this… but then I would be rambling.

I just wanted to rant about these damn reporters. I am so tired of reading lousy reports from all major or popular news stands.

—Eli Jenkins

Not my usual writing I post but I just needed to say something about this.