Thursday, December 14, 2006

The importance of doing your research

I don't want to harp on this but think it's definitely worth mentioning as a cautionary tale for reporters and researchers:

Daily Pulp pointed out the other day, via a tip from his comments on a posting about a Miami Herald story, that the story's author doesn't seem to have seen a major news report about her subject before publishing hers.

Here's the deal. One of several women found murdered in Atlantic City, reportedly all prostitutes, was a suburban mom from Broward County. The Herald's story about her claimed she was stressed from the pressure of motherhood, and escaped with a man she'd met at a class, and went back to New Jersey with him, ended up turning tricks and losing her life.

The Star-Ledger in Newark, though, had done a profile of her a couple days earlier, which reported she'd been involved with drugs in NJ before she and her husband fled to South Florida and managed to get their lives together.

Too bad the reporter didn't do a simple web news search. According to the commenter who first pointed it out, the story came up as the second result on a Google search. Said Pulp's Bob Norman:
How in the world did the Herald leave out that background? It’s really the only thing that brings context and sense to the story.

Pulp's earlier posting on the Herald story noted that lots of people were questioning it at the time.


Post a Comment

<< Home