Monday, January 30, 2017

My First Editor Always Said, "More Than One Correction, Pull the Story"

But, that was in the days of reporters.  In the age of journalists, verifying facts is too low a responsibility.

Exhibit A from Crux, the Roman Catholic online magazine:

           Editor’s note about Sunday article on Chaput and Trump

Exhibit B, from The Atlantic [formerly Monthly]:
This article originally stated that there is "no heart to speak of" in a 6-week-old fetus. In fact, the heart has already begun to form by that point in a pregnancy. The article also originally stated that an expectant mother participating in a study decided to carry her pregnancy to term even after learning that the fetus was suffering from a genetic disorder, when in fact the fetus was only at high risk for a genetic disorder. The article originally stated, as well, that Bernard Nathanson headed the National Right-to-Life Committee and became a born-again Christian. Nathanson was active in, but did not head the committee, and was never a born-again Christian, but rather a Roman Catholic. The article originally stated that many doctors in 1985 claimed fetuses had no reflexive responses to medical instruments at 12 weeks. Finally, the article originally stated that John Kasich vetoed a bill from Indiana's legislature, instead of Ohio's legislature, after which the article was incorrectly amended to state that Mike Pence had vetoed the bill. We regret the errors.
If two corrections should cause an article to be bagged, FIVE corrections should require it to be killed with fire.