In the latest example of press criticism apparently producing results, a reporter at The Washington Post who was hit hard last week from the blogosphere -- and his own paper's editorial cartoonist, Tom Toles -- for a front page story that unfairly depicted rumors about Sen. Barack Obama, produced a story with an entirely different tone for the print edition today.
Perry Bacon, Jr. came under fire for the story that covered continuing allegations from rightwingers that Obama is actually a Muslim in disguise. Some accused the paper of not knocking down the rumors as entirely false very clearly, and upfront, in the piece. Others at the Post, such as Howard Kurtz and Toles, have said that the story was not properly edited, while Bacon and some editors replied that they produced the story in the first place to tackle the rumors.
In any case, Bacon's story today on a related matter shows that the criticism certainly did have an effect. Notice the use of "false" and "falsely" in the first two sentences. Here is the opening graf: "Hillary Clinton's campaign asked one of its volunteer county coordinators in Iowa to step down after reports surfaced indicating the person forwarded an e-mail falsely stating that Barack Obama is a Muslim. Obama is a Christian and attends Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, but chain e-mails have been circulating that falsely describe him as a Muslim."
Thursday, December 6, 2007
Criticism of 'Wash Post' Over Obama Rumors Gets Results
is author of a dozen books (click on covers at right), including the new "THE TUNNELS: Escapes Under the Berlin Wall and the Historic Films the JFK White House Tried to Kill." He was the longtime editor of Editor & Publisher. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @GregMitch