On Wednesday, U.S. News & World Report allowed its writer, Elizabeth Flock, to write a story in which she left out key details. The story involved FishbowlDC’s post on a WaPo internal document introducing their summer interns.
At the end of her story Flock added a line saying she used to work at WaPo and had been the subject of a FishbowlDC item. So we wondered, what could that have possibly been? A simple revolving door job announcement or something more sinister?
From the tone of Flock’s incredible Ass Kissing Expedition of her former colleague, WaPo‘s Gene Weingarten, we assumed the latter. In her story she glorifies him and writes about how he “berated” us, calling us “petty” and “cruel” and “crappiest.” We responded, pretty tamely at that, saying that self righteousness didn’t suit him well, and that translated into we “don’t take criticism well.”
In her story, Flock conveniently leaves out key information, which is that WaPo recently issued a request for readers to — get this! — mock interns. You’d think this would be a vital detail considering that is what had gotten Weingarten all whipped up into such a lather about FBDC. WaPo asked readers to send in their “questionable” experiences with summer interns so that they could meme-ify them. Nope, that wasn’t relevant to Flock at all. Or maybe Flock’s editors over at U.S. News & World Report were taking a snooze.
Wouldn’t be the first time that Flock had editors who didn’t read her work carefully. In December of 2011, Flock was sent on a forced vacation from WaPo after she wrote a post on Mitt Romney using a KKK slogan in his speeches. The headline: “Mitt Romney is using a KKK slogan in his speeches.” Pretty big story, right? But he never did such a thing AT ALL. Editors insisted that she write the Romney campaign for comment. She said the comment went to her Spam folder. She also posted a Romney campaign ad that was not actually a Romney campaign ad. At the time, Ombudsman Patrick Pexton, as we reported, gave her a public flocking for her journalism, ethics and common sense.
Now we understand Flock’s half-assed report on our WaPo‘s intern story and her need to paint FBDC in a less than favorable light. She has a history of that sort of thing and we can’t wait to follow more of her “work” at U.S. News & World Report. Nothing personal, Liz. Hope you take the criticism well. We’re just glad you didn’t call us Nazis.