Read a Pacific Northwest, liberal perspective on world, national, and local politics. From majestic Redmond, Washington - the Northwest Progressive Institute Official Blog.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Journalamism, Politico style

Seems newly-launched newspaper/thingy Politico has some serious "egg on its face" regarding its false report that Edwards would suspend his campaign.

That's what happens sometimes when you hire people like executive editor Jim VandeHei or Ben Smith, who had to write a mea culpa.
And with less than an hour before Edwards was to announce, I unwisely wrote the item without getting a second source.
Just to give you a look behind the curtain here at NPI Towers, I too, only had a single source for the information claiming that Edwards would suspend his campaign--it was Politico. And a little birdie said "don't post that, it's not verified."

It's funny to me how people think journalists make good bloggers. That may sometimes be true (and no, we don't want to embarrass anyone by naming names) and it may not be always hold true, but a single source on a story that big? Really?

And please, don't let the on-line nature of Politico fool you. VandeHei came from the Washington Post and Smith wrote for (seemingly) all the non-Times newspapers in New York City. Kind of makes you wonder, doesn't it?

It doesn't really make a lot of sense to hire people to stick to SPJ ethics and "good journalism practices" and then have them turn around and violate them because they're on-line. Growing pains for Politico, perhaps, but kind of surprising given the big names they hired.

UPDATE--12:44 PM--Editor and Publisher has more, including the fact that Reuters also got the story wrong. That dang old single source thing again. Good thing we don't start wars 'n stuff this way, cause if some crackpot Iraqi ex-pat had gotten the ear of a NYT reporter, goodness knows what might have happened. We'd probably still be in Iraq.

<< Home