Editing mistakes were made?

Hillary Clinton campaigning. (NY Times photo)

The New York Times has been caught going passive on its scoop news story about Hillary Clinton’s email.

According to NewsDiff, the original hed read: “Criminal Inquiry Sought in Clinton’s Use of Email,” but an hour later the hed was changed to: “Criminal Inquiry Is Sought in Clinton Email Use.” The hed now reads: “Criminal Inquiry Is Sought in Clinton Email Account.”

Perhaps the editors of the Times should read their own columnists. In 2012 Times opinion writer Constance Hale penned a piece under the headline: “The Pleasures and Perils of the Passive.”

Among the passive voice phrases she cited this classic:
The most pilloried use of the passive voice might be that famous expression of presidents and press secretaries, “mistakes were made.” From Ronald Ziegler, President Richard M. Nixon’s press aide, through Presidents Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton — not to mention Attorney General Alberto Gonzales — pols have used the passive voice to spin the news, avoid responsibility or hide the truth. One political guru even dubbed this usage “the past exonerative.”
According to James Taranto’s Wall Street Journal column, the change to passive voice followed a complaint by the Clinton campaign.
Taranto also quotes WSJ’s Byron Tau as writing: “An internal government review found that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sent at least four emails from her personal account containing classified information during her time heading the State Department.”
Tau said the inspector general reviewed only 40 of Clinton’s 30,000 emails. He also wrote that the Justice Department has backed off calling the request a criminal matter.
Past exonerative?