Why wasn't analysis story labeled a such?

Question: On Jan. 21, an article was printed on page A6. The headline was, "Bush cautious, but some claims miss mark." Outside of the content of the headline and article, there was no label or other indication from the editors that they represented someone's opinion or "analysis."

Nevertheless, the headline clearly was one person's opinion, and the article was filled with opinionated statements. Bearing in mind that traditional journalism ethics place such headlines and articles on the opinion page of a newspaper, why were these placed on page A6? -- Laurie Rogers, Spokane

Answer: The story in question was a news analysis written by a reporter for the Associated Press. It should have been labeled analysis. Here is what deputy news editor Tad Brooks, who supervises our wire service report, says about the article: "The story compares and contrasts statements President Bush made in his State of the Union address with facts on the ground and asserts some of the president's claims were either not quite true or were misleading because they were made out of context. The hook of the story was that the president was burned in his prior State of the Union speech by falsely claiming Iraq tried to obtain materials for its alleged nuclear weapons program from Africa."

As a news analysis, it was appropriate the run the story in the news columns. But editors agree it should have been properly labeled. -- Steve Smith, editor

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