Posted in Behind the News

An AP ‘lede’ goes viral

, by Lauren Easton

On Twitter early this morning, if you started typing the keywords “fundamental pillar” in the search bar, the phrase popped up after the first three letters: f-u-n.

That’s because of AP’s main post-debate story. White House Correspondent Julie Pace’s lead sentence – or “lede,” as it’s known in news jargon — went viral.

Many tweets of the lede followed. MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow read it on-air:

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Threatening to upend a fundamental pillar of American democracy, Donald Trump refused to say Wednesday night that he will accept the results of next month’s election if he loses to Hillary Clinton. The Democratic nominee declared Trump’s resistance “horrifying.”

“It’s rare — it was a good lede but it basically just went viral,” Washington Bureau Chief Sally Buzbee said.

National political reporter Lisa Lerer shared the byline on the story.

That wasn’t the only viral element of the third and final presidential debate. As AP reported, after Trump called Clinton “such a nasty woman,” in the closing moments, the hashtag “nastywoman” was born.