Former student falls victim to Internet hoax, ends up in a journalism textbook

textReviewing the update of my textbook, I discovered a former student’s website error — along with a screen shot — in the chapter on accuracy. I won’t further embarrass her by pointing out specifics. But, I will say this: She should have paid attention in class.

As I will tell this fall’s intro class:Listen up! Whenever you make a mistake, somebook-coverone will say — You should have known better. That’s journalism 101.

Even good journalists, like this student, make mistakes. (By using ‘mortality” instead of “morbidity” in a front page graphic, I killed off a hundreds of people with measles.) Be careful. Pencil check — print out a copy circle and confirm–  every number, URL and name spelling. (Confession — Got caught twice on this recently.)  Better to to spend more time proofing or get scooped than to get it wrong. Get your newsroom to subscribe to Storyful which “discovers, verifies and acquires social media for newsrooms, brands and video producers.”

Or get the Verification Handbook.


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