The Problem with Getting it Wrong

Friday, September 21, 2012


The misreporting of facts can have harsh consequences for the people involved. Brooke explores some of the cases that have tarnished the reputations of individuals—and even a whole town.

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Brooke Gladstone

Comments [3]

Silence Do Good Gauge

Different take on how a fact relates to an argument.

Sep. 24 2012 02:15 PM
Stacy Harris from Nashville, Tennessee

Due to my typo, my criticism might be unclear.

This link

confirms my original point: A purported marriage of 45 years, as of The TENNESSEAN's writing, is of 44 years' duration.

Sep. 24 2012 10:44 AM

"The misreporting of facts can have harsh consequences for the people involved." Really?

Every issue of the Tennessean's print edition for some months has contained a reminder to readers that the newspaper values accuracy, as it encourages readers to report factual errors.

One of the newspaper's entertainment writers, Cindy Watts, wrote in the Tennessean's August 26, 2012 print edition that Dixie and Tom T Hall have been married for 44 years!

The Halls were married on March 16, 1968, so that's close- but no cigar!

The problem is two-fold: a rip-and-read news dissemination that resulted in Watts' error being circulated worldwide and the reporter and her editors refusing to correct the error, even when given the location (Brentwood, Tennessee) and marriage certificate number (#63564).

Similarly, The Tennessean failed to take responsibility for an Associated Press-generated photo that ran in the May 16, 2012 edition of the newspaper, directing questions to the AP. The photo identifies Kathleen Alexandra "Kick" Kennedy as the daughter of the late Mary Richardson Kennedy. The correct designation would be step-daughter.

Teresa Wasson, of the Associated Press' Brentwood, Tennessee office, upon notification of the error responded "Photo captioning is handled out of New York. I'm sending your observations about the caption to the photo editors there."

To date, still no response from the photo editors, no contrition from anyone regarding either of these incidents and, as far as I know, no reprimands let alone heads rolling.

Stacy Harris
Publisher/Executive Editor/Media Critic
Stacy's Music Row Report

Sep. 23 2012 09:20 PM

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