Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Boston Globe: Fake News Alert

This is clearly the laziest, crappiest article to come out of the Boston Globe in a long, long time. What was Matt Viser thinking? You know, I've met him on one or two occasions and he's a young, seemingly thoughtful guy (young enough that he should know better) ... but, is he serious? I mean, really?
In the unusual posting, Rubin sought to put the focus on upcoming issues, specifically an economic address and education proposals. But he also appeared to be clearly trying to divert attention from the past few weeks, when the governor's casino legislation was resoundingly defeated by the House while he was out of state on undisclosed personal business....

Reviews were mixed, and as they tend to be online, pointed.

"Nice to see the ambulance was able to make it here, Mr. Rubin," wrote a poster using the name EaBoClipper. "But methinks the patient already lost too much blood."

The one quote he's going to include from the actual comments - indicative of the "mixed" review - is EaBoClipper, the hard-core Republican activist? That's supposed to be a fair representation of how the Governor's base feels? Come on! Journalists must love quoting from blogs, because they get to skip all the thoughtful and insightful posts and skip right to the one that's so offensive and so out of left field that they'd never, in a million years, ever be able to write that kind of crap under any other circumstances: they wouldn't write it themselves, and they wouldn't even quote it from an interview.

If this were posted a day earlier, I'd say this was a clever April Fool's Day joke from the old media to the new, but seeing how it wasn't I decided it was time for a Letter to the Editor. Here's what I sent in:
As a frequent contributer on, I'm truly baffled by Matt Viser's article about the Patrick Administration's post on the popular website ("Patrick is in a bind with his base," April 2nd). Far from showing an accurate representation of the Governor's base, Viser's shown a complete lack of understanding re: the dreaded blogosphere. Let me clue him in: BlueMassGroup is a site comprised of anyone - not just the Governor's base. Viser cherry-picked the comments included in his article, focusing on a quote from a Republican activist (EaBoClipper) who's never supported the Governor. How does that equate to disappointment among Patrick's supporters, the very thing Viser suggests happened in his headline? (Correct answer: it doesn't.)

If Viser bothered to do even a modicum of research, he wouldn't have fallen for that trap. Is it that difficult for professional journalists to really understand the blogosphere? For a true representation of the community, Viser needs to do more research, and an include a wider pool of sources than snarky Republicans. However, most important of all, why should Viser not do what he'd do in any other article - contact the source. To do anything else is lazy, sloppy journalism.
H/T Afertig at BMG.

No comments:

About Ryan's Take