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Mike Wise of WaPo fakes story to make a point

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by BB Bobcat, Aug 31, 2010.

  1. BB Bobcat

    BB Bobcat Active Member

    Surprised not to see this yet. Apologies if it was posted and I missed it.

    http://backporch.fanhouse.com/2010/08/30/washington-posts-mike-wise-fabricates-a-story-to-prove-a-point/
     
  2. Twoback

    Twoback Active Member

    It is shocking to me that no one has though this worthy of comment.
    Seriously, just making stuff up is OK now?
     
  3. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member

    Twoback, I think a lot of people have no interest in talking about journalism on this site anymore.
     
  4. 93Devil

    93Devil Well-Known Member

    On the national level, there is such a rush to be first with breaking news that probably 75-80 percent of what is reported in the first 2-3 hours of an event is just flat out wrong.

    It greatly cheapens the entire profession of journalism, but with the modern media tools of today (twitter, PDAs, instant updates), you have to report the knee jerk or you will be left in the dust. And does Joe the Plumber even remember who was first and who was wrong?

    The days of waiting to hear what Cronkite has to say at 6:30 are long gone. But honestly, would we ever want them back?

    What really makes me think is if 9/11 happened this September instead of 10 years ago. What would the media coverage be like today? What false stories would be would be clogging the news process?

    Oh, Wise was nuts to do this.
     
  5. Azrael

    Azrael Active Member

    "To make a point?" To make what point?
     
  6. CR19

    CR19 Member

    Maybe this is just me, but shouldn't you work towards stopping the breaking news trend rather than trying to fool the media?
     
  7. 93Devil

    93Devil Well-Known Member

    Can a media source brand itself as the source that gets it right?

    Last, but correct?

    Sort of different than "All the News That's Fit to Print."
     
  8. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    It's an insult to journalism to file this story under journalism.

    Career suicide, maybe. Psychiatry. The ol' 'They held me at gunpoint and made me do it' gambit.

    Bigger question: fireable offense? Can a newspaper afford to feature a writer who fakes a story? This isn't Sidd Finch, haha, April 1st. He picked one of the hottest topics in sports to lie about.
     
  9. Twoback

    Twoback Active Member

    His point is that nobody checks out this stuff -- but when someone brings the force of the Washington Post brand, there's an assumption that it has been "checked out."
    When the Post was writing Watergate stories, the paper in Omaha or Austin or Las Vegas didn't have the wherewithal to go in and check the reporting of Woodward and Bernstein. There were two choices: ignore the most important piece of journalism of the 20th century, or trust that the Post was doing a credible job and credit the Post for its work.
    So is Wise's point that everybody should just have ignored the Post on Watergate?
     
  10. 93Devil

    93Devil Well-Known Member

    I have a feeling the Watergate Investigation was edited a little bit harder than today's Twitter feeds.
     
  11. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    And he's probably right (although in this case, seems like the story was attributed to him by those who repeated it).

    You want to fool your colleagues into making a lazy mistake? Spread rumor at an All-Star game or somewhere the readers and fans aren't also caught up in your sociology experiment. You don't report it as a fact to the people who trust you to tell them the truth, and who have no way of checking it out themselves.
     
  12. Twoback

    Twoback Active Member

    Of course, Devil.
    I'd just expect someone who is representing the Washington Post to have greater standards.
    And 21, why would anyone want to "fool your colleagues into making a lazy mistake?" What purpose is served by this?
    If a journalist wants to make the point that credibility and thoroughness and accuracy are more important than speed, perhaps one should endeavor to be credible, thorough and accurate.
    There's a thought.
     
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