Tonight, Nate Silver Gets His Own Copy Editor

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Tonight is a big night for Nate Silver. Not only will the evening's electoral outcome determine whether the stats wunderkind is or is not a witch -- and not only will it determine whether Silver owes Joe Scarborough a Red Cross donation of $2,000 -- but it is also the culmination of several years' worth of Silver's electoral analysis.

And that means, as well, that tonight is also a big night for the current host of Silver's analysis: The New York Times. Yesterday, 20 percent of all visits to nytimes.com -- the sixth-most-trafficked news site in the United States -- went to Silver's FiveThirtyEightBlog.

It's no wonder, then, that the Times, tonight, is doing something both unusual and appropriate: The outlet is giving Silver ... his own copy editor. The stats guru, Margaret Sullivan, the paper's public editor, tweeted earlier this evening, "has his very own dedicated copy editor tonight." Which makes sense: Silver is and will continue to be churning out high amounts of copy tonight -- and that copy will be seen by thousands, if not (maybe) millions, of people.

That high, and high-stakes, viewership was a big part of the Times's decision to focus-edit Silver, Sullivan suggested. "No one would begrudge such a thing," she tweeted, "given his traffic."

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Megan Garber is a staff writer at The Atlantic. She was formerly an assistant editor at the Nieman Journalism Lab, where she wrote about innovations in the media.

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