When news breaks, we fix it

That was the old slogan of Jon Stewart’s Daily Show. This morning, while I was in a meeting, my cell phone reported the following ‘breaking news’ from CNN:

“– An explosion at a Connecticut power plant near Hartford has caused “mass casualties,” authorities say.”

Pretty scary. What was it? What’s going on? Well it turns out, now, 6 hours later, that “at least 5” people died, and 12 injured. Still a serious accident but how can CNN justify that kind of sensational report sent out on their ‘breaking news’ text message?

I was talking this weekend to someone with a lot of experience as a journalist and he said, to my surprise, that news organizations don’t even bother ‘fact checking’ stories now. Gone are the days I remember from ‘All the President’s Men‘ when every story had to be confirmed independently by one, maybe two other sources.

0 thoughts on “When news breaks, we fix it

  1. Yes, these days, I take it as a given assumption that the news organizations don’t check their facts. There is a great documentary film about Alan Abel, a man who spent a few decades of his life creating media hoaxes, fake press conferences, satirical activist groups.. and the media fell victim nearly every time.(www.alanabel.com)I didn’t get a chance to talk to you at Jerry’s retreat, but nice to meet you virtually!


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