New Media Central has a new Editor-at-Large, Orwell N’ Goode (it is a pun for all well and good). Recently he published an article in which a woman accused Seth Rogan on Twitter of sexual assault. You can read it for yourself.
I am the Editor-in-Chief of this website and we have a stable of extremely talented writers and contributors. Orwell is in Buenos Aries finishing his Masters degree in economics. He is a brilliant man with a lot on his plate. Unfortunately he was fed bad information by a few sources concerning a Twitter user and Seth Rogan. What occurred in Orwell’s case happens at such an absurdly high rate within the news industry you will be shocked by the statistics.
Many reading this will want to break this down into a left vs right dichotomy, but it is much more than that. As Orwell explained in his article he reached out for comment to the accuser that claimed Seth Rogan engaged in inappropriate behavior, but her Twitter account was already suspended and because of Orwell’s due diligence and humility to admit his mistake, he posted a retraction IN THE ARTICLE. He didn’t have to do that. He could have done what so many online journalists do and silently write a quick piece to correct the record and bury it someone on the website or delete the piece and pretend it never happened. I am proud of Orwell, that he stood up and was able to take the proper steps to remedy the situation.
You see he has a moral compass and when he did more digging it was about a quick hour later the retraction was up, and I repeat, it was up in the same article so the falsehoods were corrected for those that had the link to the original piece. So even if people had the link to the original article floating around, they’d see in bold that the record was set straight.
Now I am sympathetic to those that have a jaded attitude when it comes to journalists. Here are some statistics that would make even Tom Brokaw and Edward R. Murrow doubt the entire news media.
According to a study done by a professor and reported on by Slate (not a friend to right-wing publications) many newspapers make factual errors and very rarely ever correct them.
According to Slate:
Maier, an associate professor at the University of Oregon’s School of Journalism and Communication, describes in a forthcoming research paper his findings that fewer than 2 percent of factually flawed articles are corrected at dailies.
You read that right. Now imagine how much misinformation is seared into your mind. Hope you realize that a lot of that wonderful knowledge that you have received by reading newspapers and online articles is false.
As written in Slate about the professor’s study:
The results might shock even the most jaded of newspaper readers. About 69 percent of the 3,600 news sources completed the survey, and they spotted 2,615 factual errors in 1,220 stories. That means that about half of the stories for which a survey was completed contained one or more errors. Just 23 of the flawed stories—less than 2 percent—generated newspaper corrections. No paper corrected more than 4.2 percent of its flawed articles.
For the hour that article was up it was making the rounds and I’ll be blunt, it was receiving many clicks, however, New Media Central and Orwell’s reputation is more important than you clicking an ad for an Asian dating site. We could have left it up even longer. We could have chalked it up to the fact that most of Twitter along with us were trolled. But no, that isn’t what we are about! Yes we have a right-wing slant, and yes mistakes will be made, however unlike many of the sites I just googled that are still running the story, we will admit it when we get a story wrong, even if it was only up for a little over an hour.
Maybe if Orwell claimed to have been under sniper fire getting off a helicopter in Bosnia, or ran to France because he raped a teen girl hed’d be applauded. (Do not tell me there is no liberal double standard!)
The main reason I am bringing this to light is to compliment Orwell for his honest behavior, because honor and journalist are two words very seldom utilized next to one another.
You see, here at NMC we continually fact check, and the one time in over a year I can remember we reported an event incorrectly. Maybe to satisfy any liberals reading this we can utilize unnamed sources that claim President Trump enjoys being urinated on by Russian hookers and keep our credibility. Oh, that wasn’t us, that was almost every major publication in the West!
My final words to our readers, please fact check us. Maybe we did make a mistake and we aren’t too proud and pompous to admit when we are wrong. Don’t believe everything you read (except that. It’s a joke.).
For our religious readers out there remember what Saint Paul wrote to the Thessalonians:
“But prove all things; hold fast that which is good.”
Enjoyed this article? Pick up Ian Erickson’s book Broken on Amazon!