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Fallout Continues Over Retracted Boston.com Item

SichuanGardenLogoA juicy deconstruction has been shared today by Boston magazine contributing editor David S. Bernstein.

As many of you have already heard and read, Boston.com last week published and then retracted a follow-up item suggesting that a Harvard Business School professor had sent an email with racist overtones to a local Chinese restaurant. Incredibly, a subsequent editorial meeting about all this on Thursday December 11 was secretly recorded and leaked. Bernstein, under the headline “What the Hell Happened to Boston.com?“, offers a full-course primer about the chronology of this journalistic debacle. Events that are still percolating and progressing a week later:

According to a report this morning on BostInno, the [Boston.com] editorial reins, at least in the interim, will be put in the hands of someone with no apparent newsroom editing experience at all: Eleanor Cleverly, Globe Media’s director of content for digital marketplaces. The same report suggests that [editor, retracted item co-author Hilary] Sargent is going to move into a senior writer’s role.

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Thanks to $72 Million Blunder, Bloomberg Gets Way More Than They Bargained For

NYMagReasonsLogoDeck the halls with bows of expletive. That might well describe the mood at Bloomberg today, given that a journalist they just hired has been tarred with the latest MSM fact-check scandal.

Ultimately, it is Jessica Pressler who is responsible, as the bylined author of the New York magazine item, for this note at the top of a New York Post pick-up:

Mohammed Islam has since admitted he lied to New York magazine and did not make any money on the stock market, an Observer interview reveals.

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A Howler of a New York Times Correction

ShutterstockdoghowlBow Wow Ow!

In what stands, at this late calendar-year stage, as an instant frontrunner for New York Times Correction of the Year, the following note has been added to Rick Gladstone‘s December 12 piece suggesting that Pope Francis hinted well-behaved dogs were perhaps bounding past the Pearly Gates:

Correction: December 12, 2014

An earlier version of this article misstated the circumstances of Pope Francis’ remarks. He made them in a general audience at the Vatican, not in consoling a distraught boy whose dog had died. The article also misstated what Francis is known to have said. According to Vatican Radio, Francis said: “The Holy Scripture teaches us that the fulfillment of this wonderful design also affects everything around us,” which was interpreted to mean he believes animals go to heaven. Francis is not known to have said: “One day, we will see our animals again in the eternity of Christ. Paradise is open to all of God’s creatures.” (Those remarks were once made by Pope Paul VI to a distraught child, and were cited in a Corriere della Sera article that concluded Francis believes animals go to heaven.) An earlier version also referred incompletely to the largest animal protection group in the United States. It is the Humane Society of the United States, not just the Humane Society.

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People Editor Has a Rough Weekend

For People magazine news editor Stephen M. Silverman, it began Saturday when the Twitterverse started taking notice of a prematurely posted Kirk Douglas obit.

PeopleDONOTPUB_KirkDouglas

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Former Aerosmith Manager to Boston Magazine: Dream On

JoePerryRocksCoverWhile the first couple of article commenters are questioning the evidence presented by former Aerosmith manager Steve Leber, the editors of Boston magazine are convinced. They’ve changed the online headline of their original October issue article featuring an excerpt from Joe Perry‘s new memoir Rocks: My Life In and Out of Aerosmith and posted a correction that will also appear in the December print issue’s Letters to the Editor section.

Leber wrote in to adamantly deny the insinuation, in the excerpted book passage, that a framed copy of a check referenced by Perry suggested his firm had been directly paid proceeds from a Concert for Bangladesh. Leber sent Boston magazine a copy of what he says is the correct check – made out to the concert organizers – and took the publication to task:

I’d like to set the record straight and wish you had called me to check the facts before you printed the piece, which essentially calls me a crook and accuses me of stealing from a charity. A copy of the check Joe Perry refers to in the article is attached. As you and your readers can see, it is not made out to me, as Mr. Perry asserts, but it is, in fact, made out to United Nations Children’s Fund for Relief to Refugee Children of Bangladesh.

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No Women on This Variety ‘Leaders’ List

ShutterstockBoysClubWhat happened here? Did this one not cross the desk of co-EIC Claudia Eller?

The byline says Variety Staff, which means the individual(s) responsible for the October 28 article is(are) avoiding individual flaming. However, in the item comments, on Facebook and beyond, folks are slamming the trade for highlighting seven men and zero women as “Hollywood’s New Leaders: PR/Digital/Management.”

What’s next? Well, among other things, one or more of the featured men will likely be heard over lunch, in the steam room and to female colleagues insisting they had nothing to do with the selection.

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A Very Cute Taylor Swift Typo

Sometimes, a headline mistake isn’t simply a headline mistake. It’s also cause for lexicon celebration.

TaylorSwiftBramptonGuardian

Few people have more riding on their perceived cuteness than current pop sensation Taylor Swift. It’s at the very heart of her appeal.

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How to Spot the Banksy BS

BanksyArtIn light of a fake news article being widely shared on social media about the arrest of street artist Banksy, the International Business Times’ Ewan Palmer has some critical advice for Facebook and Twitter users:

All readers need to do is check: A) Does the article appear on National Report? and B) Is Paul Horner mentioned anywhere in it?

Actually, since Horner also likes to attach his Web journalism pranks to the byline Jimmy Rustling at Super Official News, folks need to double up on this front.

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Mel Gibson Catches a Typo-Break

The actor gets no love from the X17 blog item headline, which derisively reads: “Mel Gibson Runs His Sugar Tits Through The Scanner At LAX.”

However, in the first sentence of the third paragraph – to go along with missing mention of The Expendables - an extra “E” has been accidentally added to the word “sexist:”

X17MelGibsonTypo

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Opposing Views Recommends the Wrong Slide Show

The battle being fought by Columbia University student Emma Sulkowicz is a serious one. It began with an essay in Time magazine this spring about being raped on the first day of school and has progressed to the senior now carrying around a mattress to protest the school’s handling of her case.

Opposing Views, a website based in Los Angeles that gets gargantuan Web traffic, does a good job of summarizing Sulkowicz’s campaign. But then, all is undone thanks to the following link at the bottom of the article:

OpposingViewsArticleTag

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