Thursday, November 04, 2004

The NY Times: Accuracy need not apply

Greg Djerejian of Belgravia Dispatch cuts the NY Times' Kerry campaign-embedded (or is that in-bedded?) reporter with a major inaccuracy. It seems that the NY Times has no need for actual accuracy in quoting major speeches, even though transcripts of those speeches are available beforehand in many cases, or shortly thereafter all over the 'Net.

I was called on the carpet a couple of times by sources and subjects questioning my statements in articles back in my journo days. But I always had my own notes, and usually a tape recorder, to double-check accuracy. Sure enough, when I received a call from UVa's star receiver questioning what I quoted him saying after an article caused a ruckus, I looked at my notes and quoted back to him exactly what I had transcribed at the time. Was my transcription accurate? Likely, because what I couldn't get down immediately, I would not quote, and the receiver's statement was so controversial that mine wasn't the only eyebrow that rose up.

So if I knew how to do this as a 20-year old sports reporter on a college newspaper without transcripts available or an Internet to reference, how come a campaign reporter for the NY Times is unable to ensure the accuracy of how he quotes (and characterizes the quotes) John Kerry when the reporter DOES have a transcript and the Internet to reference before his deadline?

Maybe the reporter is a bit biased? Click the link in the title and see what you think.

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