Systemd Error: “Reason: Bad message”

Just encountered a confusing systemd error when I tried to restart a service who’s unit file was recently changed:

[nick@onebox ~]$ systemctl status stats_collector.service
stats_collector.service - Stats Collector
   Loaded: error (Reason: Bad message)
   Active: failed (Result: resources) since Thu 2013-08-29 18:29:52 UTC; 1min 30s ago
 Main PID: 16920 (code=exited, status=1/FAILURE)

Turns out, an erroneous newline was added, adding unknown directive to the unit file. So, ‘Bad message’ seems to be roughly the equivalent of a ‘syntax error’. Bad message! Bad!

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