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A phony reporter

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Drip, Mar 10, 2014.

  1. Drip

    Drip Active Member

    This is unbelievable.
  2. BurnsWhenIPee

    BurnsWhenIPee Well-Known Member

    Wow. They went above and beyond when they finished with the reporters' alleged transgressions when she was employed by them and went on to call into question her academic dishonesty and her dishonest actions with previous employers. That was a nuclear attack.

    I'd question why they didn't find out about the academic stuff and problems at her former employers before they hired her. Should have been part of the reference and background check process, I'm thinking. If they did their jobs then, she wouldn't have been hired and wouldn't have been able to dirty their name.
  3. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    I remember one of my former bosses telling us about a call from another paper about a co-worker. He said, "On the record, I can confirm that he has worked here since August of 1990 and has covered the following beats for us... Off the record, I hope you hire him so I'll never have to see him or talk to him ever again."

    The person who called him was a friend of his, so that was a little different.
  4. murphyc

    murphyc Well-Known Member

    I agree, especially in regards to not verifying the academic stuff. In terms of former employers, due to potential liability the other papers may have only felt comfortable verifying when she was employed there. I once had a co-worker who, among other things, sent in fake letters the editor praising her work. When she left for a different weekly, she threatened our boss she would sue if he gave anything but a glowing recommendation. I felt sorry for her new boss, who was a great guy in desperate need of someone to help him out. Instead he got just the opposite.
    To me, the most surprising thing is al.com not verifying some of the same information.
  5. PCLoadLetter

    PCLoadLetter Well-Known Member

    My mom is an office manager and got some advice early on that has served her well. If an employer calls to check a reference about a problem employee, she says "I will verify that she worked for us from date A to date B, but that's all I have to say about her time here." Legally safe, and most employers seem to get the message.

    Honestly, I have no idea how often employers actually verify education on a resume. Mine is correct so it hasn't been an issue, but I have no idea if my employers have actually checked it, and it certainly wouldn't surprise me if some hadn't.
  6. SnarkShark

    SnarkShark Well-Known Member

    Isn't this a bit much? The article in question wasn't even published.

    What's the intention here, other than completely crushing this reporter's future career (which may be worth crushing)?

    Seems more like Lagniappe wanted to pat itself on the back for catching it's own reporter (ALARM BELLS WENT OFF!), along with vindictively laying waste to Nichols' career.

    Saying that they are "setting the record straight" is bullshit. What record needed to be corrected, exactly?
  7. BurnsWhenIPee

    BurnsWhenIPee Well-Known Member

    I've always been told if you get a reference call about a poor former employee, you verify dates of employment and say they are not eligible to be rehired, and that's it.

    Don't know if it's true, but have heard you can get in quite a legal hassle if you trash them in a reference call and it hurts their ability to find future employment. If that's the case, I can't imagine what kind of problems this story could cause all this reporter's past employers who were quoted. This is the kind of scorched-earth story that pretty much makes her unemployable.
  8. MTM

    MTM Well-Known Member

    An editor once told me that he never gave a bad reference to a current employee because he either liked them and wanted them to advance in their career or he disliked them and wanted them to leave.

    But only verifying dates of employment is a big red flag, as someone said earlier.

    I had the HR department ask me what year I graduated from college after I interviewed with the news executives. I assumed that was so they could check if I really got a degree.
  9. SoloFlyer

    SoloFlyer Active Member

    Might want to read it again, Snark. Lagniappe said the manufactured but non-published story prompted an investigation into her previous work, which led to the discovery of other falsified sources and uncorroborated information that actually was published.

    I'd say that's something that needs to be admitted and aired publicly.
  10. SnarkShark

    SnarkShark Well-Known Member

    I think it is speculation to say the two sources in question were falsified. Both sources were investigated and they couldn't find proof they were falsified. They essentially said they looked suspicious, but couldn't prove they were made-up.
  11. DeskMonkey1

    DeskMonkey1 Active Member

    I've dealt with one of the co-founders of that paper and I'm not at all surprised he would do this. I *am* surprised he do it on a public forum, though
  12. Sounds like she got what she deserved.

    She'll probably be working in PR in a month.
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