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All the News in Fits of Print!
 
— Motto[1]

The Daily Punctilio is the main newspaper that operates in the City and is often sold & read in its surrounding areas such as the Hinterlands. It is wildly popular regardless of its often erroneous information and it spreads like wildfire whenever a new edition is published. As a result, it becomes a source of annoyance and later distress for the Baudelaire children.

Description

The Daily Punctilio seems to be the main newspaper source in The City, and as such its stories are widely circulated. Most readers trust and believe the newspaper,[2] though others have accused it of taking its news from innuendo- a word which here means, "people who call up newspapers and tell them things that aren't necessarily true."

The latest known Editor-in-Chief is Eleanora Poe.[1]

Controversy

The Daily Punctilio is often portrayed in the series as an unreliable source of information and often gets the facts wrong. It distorts the truth to the extent that it can be considered propaganda and fraudulent reporting, though how intentional this is has been up for debate.[1][3] The misinformation is subsequently widespread and many of its readers assume the information is true.[2][4]

Their headlines are often sensationalist, possibly to entice more readers and generate more profits. The newspaper often focuses on gossip and trivial affairs, often titled with ridiculous and absurd headlines such as: "POLICE SEARCH FOR MISSING MUSTACHE."

Not only that, but the newspaper is also generally unprofessional. For example, instead of simply retelling the facts and being a source of news, the newspaper often includes personal essay-like writing styles and opinion pieces (editorializing), such as including the opinion: "Perishing in a fire would have been much better compared to being eaten alive by deadly leeches." Professional grammar and writing style is often absent.[1][5] Worst of all, The Daily Punctilio can be notorious for publishing libelous information in articles that focus on key individuals such as relentlessly framing the Baudelaire orphans for several crimes they did not commit[2] and claiming that Monty Montgomery dislikes reptiles despite the fact his profession involves handling them.[6]

Notable Mistakes

  • Reported that the Duchess of Winnipeg was "Deaf" instead of "Dead".[5]
  • Reports the supposed death of Lemony Snicket.[1]
  • Refers to Count Olaf as "Count Omar,"[3] Violet as "Veronica," Klaus as "Klyde," and Sunny as "Susie."[2]
  • Refers the Quagmire triplets as twins.[3]
  • Reports Esmé Squalor was kidnapped by "Count Omar", in spite of the fact that she willingly joined him.[3]
  • Reports the murder of "Count Omar" by the Baudelaire children despite that they were framed by the real Count Olaf and were actually innocent.[3]
  • Reports the Baudelaires as being responsible for numerous crimes.[2][4]

Netflix

  • Claims Montgomery Montgomery had "snake allergies" and "hated snakes".[7]
  • Tries to push the narrative that the Baudelaires murdered their parents, Montgomery Montgomery and Josephine Anwhistle because they want their fortune all to themselves.[7]

History

The archives of The Daily Punctilio were kept in Paltryville,[8] in stacks of paper in plain view. Sometime before the Heimlich Hospital Fire, it was scattered.[1]

While Eleanora Poe was Editor-in-Chief, Lemony Snicket started working at The Daily Punctilio as an assistant obituary spell-checker.[1] After the death of the Duchess of Winnipeg, however, Lemony was promoted to dramatic critic, while Geraldine Julienne became fashion editor and Jacques Snicket was transferred to financial times.[5]

Lemony remained as a dramatic critic for over a year. However, after a scathing review of a play Eleanora enjoyed, One Last Warning to Those Who Try to Stand in My Way by Al Funcoot, he was fired. Lemony attempted to leak the real reason for his firing, but was intercepted; following this, the basement in which the printing presses were kept was to be locked when not in use. The dramatic review column was then retired and replaced with "Secret Organizations You Should Know About" by Geraldine Julienne, though Julienne was often bored with the column and released rumors or lies. However, the facts that managed to slip through greatly harmed V.F.D.[1] The Punctilio soon also falsely reported that Lemony was an arsonist,[9] and then that he had died.[1]

Sometime afterwards, Jacques seems to have become an investigative journalist and reported on the burning of Anwhistle Aquatics, framing Fernald.[10]

Years later, they reported on the death of Georgina Orwell twice, first under Jacques's investigative notes, revealing it to be murder by Count Olaf and the Bald Man, and then secondly from the investigation of Detective Smith, Detective Jones and Detective Smithjones, who claimed it was an accident. Following this, Jacques suspected that Olaf was hijacking the paper's information.[1]

The paper reported on the Quagmire triplet kidnapping, though their information was so unhelpful that it ended up hindering the investigation. One such mistake was identifying Count Olaf as Count "Omar," meaning he had no issues using his real name while being hunted.[3] Following Olaf's fake death, and despite villagers of the Village of Fowl Devotees witnessing him escape, the Daily Punctilio reported that Omar had been murdered by Veronica, Klyde and Susie Baudelaire. They began a smear campaign against the children, continuously blaming them for every wrong thing that had happened around them, and thus causing them to become fugitives.[2] Around this time, they also reported on the dangers of telephone poles, telegrams, and the danger of allowing young people to read certain books.

Around this time, Julienne locked Eleanora Poe in the basement of The Daily Punctilio under instruction from Esmé Squalor, likely taking over the paper herself or allowing it to fall into fire-starter hands.[1] She then reported on the Caligari Carnival's lions, then placing the blame for the Caligari Fire again on the Baudelaires due to rumors.[4] Several copies of the newspaper were submitted as evidence in the Baudelaires' trial.[11]

Netflix Series Divergent Canon

Eleanora Poe is noted to be both Editor-and-Chief and a star reporter, often writing about cases herself, though she isn't great at spelling.[12][13] She also claims that they predicted the last two of nine elections.[14]

About ten years following the Baudelaire case, Eleanora is arrested for false journalism and the newspaper is shut down.[15]

Reputation

Ugh! If I invented something as sloppily as this newspaper writes its stories, it would fall apart immediately.
 
The newspaper is regarded by the casual reader to be trustworthy and factual,[2] however more skeptical readers have pointed out the flaws in its journalism, and it is considered by them to not be a reliable source of news.[1]

The Volunteers Fighting Disease do not read the newspaper because they believe the saying that "no news is good news" because the articles are often depressing.[2]

Staff

Former

  • R - possibly, as her mother's death caused a shuffle of employees at the newspaper, likely meaning she was working there and had to quit her job.[5]
  • Jacques Snicket – reported for "Verifying Fernald's Defection," Royal Gardens Arson,[10] and the death of Georgina Orwell.[1] At some point worked in the Financial Times.[5]
  • Lemony Snicket – Obituary Spellchecker,[5] then Drama Critic before going on the Lam.[1]

Trivia

  • "The Daily Punctilio" is an ironic misnomer, as "punctilious" means "showing great attention to detail or correct behavior."
  • The paper's motto is "All the News in Fits of Print" which is a humorous twist on the The New York Times's motto, "All the News That's Fit to Print."

Gallery

Books

Film

Netflix

Sources

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