‘Yay!’: WSJ issues correction after editor's glee at Covid relief included in story

Paper says word was ‘inadvertently inserted during editing of an article on Friday about Connecticut’s restrictions’

Wall Street Journal editors working from home in Connecticut fell under suspicion on Monday, when the paper published an unusual correction.

“The stray word ‘Yay!’ was inadvertently inserted,” it said, “during editing of an article on Friday about Connecticut’s Covid-19 restrictions.”

The piece in question was printed in Friday’s paper. It reported a state decision to lift all capacity limits on offices, shops and restaurants from 19 March, though a mask mandate will stay in place.

“This is not Texas,” the paper quoted Democratic governor Ned Lamont telling reporters. “This is not Mississippi. We are maintaining the masks. We know what works, and masks work.”

It was not clear from the online correction if the mystery man or woman who inserted the stray “Yay!” was delighted by news of restrictions lifting, or by Lamont’s expression of faith in face masks, or by the simple fact of Connecticut not being Mississippi or Texas.

Online images of the Journal’s print edition, however, revealed the “Yay!” to have been inserted after Lamont’s statement that “masks work”.

The story in the Wall Street Journal last Friday.
The story in the Wall Street Journal last Friday. Photograph: wsj.com

Connecticut will also move to ease restrictions on private gatherings and outdoor amusement parks and event venues, and relax a travel advisory regarding neighbouring states.

According to Johns Hopkins University, by Tuesday Connecticut had recorded 287,396 cases of Covid-19 and 7,725 deaths. The US case count was 29,018,455 and the death toll 525,445.

Improved vaccine supply and access and effective Covid restrictions have seen case numbers drop across the US. But federal experts have warned of a potential “fourth wave” from virus variants and urged states not to drop their guard.

Many Republican-led states, Texas and Mississippi prominent among them, have chosen to disregard such advice.


Martin Pengelly in New York

The GuardianTramp

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