UPDATE: The people at CNN should pile their credentials and diplomas in a central location and set them ablaze. Like the Wicker Man.
But there’s so much blame to go around. Murphy is right.
How did this ever get published? In case they change it later, here’s the lede:
Experts say the two bombs used near the Boston Marathon finish line were built using pressure cookers, and contained black powder or gunpowder as the explosive and ball bearings as shrapnel. Experts say instructions on how to design such bombs are available on the Internet.
That’s two “experts say” in one paragraph. Inconceivable! And nowhere else in the story are those two claims re-referenced with some explanation of who those “experts” are and what, specifically, they say. Just, you know, experts!
UPDATE: They did fix it. A little.
On today’s “Fresh Air” show, Globe columnist Dan Shaughnessy repeated the widely reported and widely corrected claim that law enforcement shut down cell phone networks to prevent the use of phones as detonators. The host, Terry Gross did not correct him. Can’t nobody here play this game? This mistake seems to have originated from super-safe AP.
Last night, the cable news shows were not only trafficking in the “several unexploded bombs” story but using their “experts” to explain how helpful those unexploded bombs would be in tracking down the maker. Don’t even get me started.
All yesterday afternoon, I was hovering over a report from the Atlantic site that Newtown families were seated in a VIP section near the blast. I lost count of all the times this was retweeted, by organs of the press and by just folks. I decided not to give it to our radio news people or put it on my blog. It didn’t seem correct. (One darkly amusing phenomenon is the way Twitter-users will see the same thing pop up from two different sources and then call it “confirmed” even though all the sources are just stampeding away from the same, single report.) I have yet to see any real confirmation of this. If it’s wrong, the Atlantic — and others — ought to say so.
Police commissioner Ed Davis is not a journalist, but he certainly muddied the waters in his first press conference, when he got way over his skis about the “third incident” at the JFK Library and then suggested people could draw “your own conclusions” about whether this was terrorism. Draw you own conclusions? What the hell kind of an official statement is that? Another example of why Paul Vance should be thanked effusively for his restraint and care in the Newtown shootings.