Atlantic Journalistic Malpractice

From Glenn Greenwald at The Intercept;  Journalism’s New Propaganda Tool: Using “Confirmed” to Mean Its Opposite:

But journalism is not supposed to be grounded in whether something is “believable” or “seems like it could be true.” Its core purpose, the only thing that really makes it matter or have worth, is reporting what is true, or at least what evidence reveals. And that function is completely subverted when news outlets claim that they “confirmed” a previous report when they did nothing more than just talked to the same people who anonymously whispered the same things to them as were whispered to the original outlet.

Quite aside from this specific story about whether Trump loves The Troops, conflating the crucial journalistic concept of “confirmation” with “hearing the same idle gossip” or “unproven assertions” is a huge disservice. It is an instrument of propaganda, not reporting. And its use has repeatedly deceived rather than informed the public. Anyone who doubts that should review how it is that MSNBC and CBS both claimed to have “confirmed” a CNN report which turned out to be ludicrously and laughably false. Clearly, the term “confirmation” has lost its meaning in journalism.


Yes, it could be true, but that is poor grounds for a reporter.  The more outrageous an accusation the greater care should be taken to prove it.  If they are unwilling to go on the record and there is contrary evidence it should be shelved.  Rage makes you stupid.

The left chose to believe outrageous claims against Kavanaugh, even though Judy Munro-Leighton who accused him of gang rape admitted she lied- and she was a source willing to go on the record.  Julia Swetnick represented by Michael Avenatti also went on the record and lied.  Deborah Ramirez also made accusations but could find no one to verify her claims.  If these women went on the record with such falsehoods what should we think of anonymous sources who are off the record because of fear from Twitter.

Even the central figure of Christine Ford could not get her four witnesses to confirm anything she said and experienced sex crimes prosecutor Rachael Mitchell listed numerous problems with her testimony.  Yet there were those on the left who ‘chose’ to believe her.  Proof or due process be damned.


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