Monday, April 23, 2007

The Times: No Harm, No Foul

By disclosing pieces of evidence favorable to the defendants, the defense has created an image of a case heading for the rocks. But an examination of the entire 1,850 pages of evidence gathered by the prosecution in the four months after the accusation yields a more ambiguous picture. It shows that while there are big weaknesses in Mr. Nifong’s case, there is also a body of evidence to support his decision to take the matter to a jury.

--New York Times, 25 August 2006

Roy Cooper’s April 12 press conference contained two messages for the New York Times. “I think,” the attorney general remarked, “a lot of people owe a lot of apologies to, to other people. I think that those people ought to consider doing that.” It would be hard to imagine that Times columnists Selena Roberts and Harvey Araton, reporter Duff Wilson, and the paper’s senior editors would not be included in the category of those who owe apologies to the falsely accused students.

Cooper had more to say: “We believe these three individuals are innocent of these charges . . . we have no credible evidence that an attack occurred in that house on that night.” With those words, the attorney general of North Carolina effectively asserted that the New York Times got a major story completely wrong: there was “no credible evidence that an attack occurred in that house on that night” on April 12, 2007, just as there was “no credible evidence that an attack occurred in that house on that night” based on the 1850 pages of discovery files that Duff Wilson purported to examine last August.

---------

In yesterday’s Times, public editor Byron Calame reviewed the paper’s lacrosse coverage in an article that reminded a Liestoppers commenter “of the women’s sleepwear you see advertised in Victoria’s Secret catalogs. It covers everything, but you can see right through it. One wonders why he even bothered to write it.”

Calame’s scarcely credible thesis: “I found that the past year’s articles generally reported both sides, and that most flaws flowed from journalistic lapses rather than ideological bias.”

Who does Calame think he’s fooling? Imagine the following scenario: three African-American college students are charged with a crime for which almost no evidence exists. One has an air-tight, public, unimpeachable alibi. Their accuser is a white woman with a criminal record and major psychological problems. They are prosecuted by a race-baiting district attorney who violates myriad procedures while seizing upon the case amidst an election campaign in a racially divided county.

Does anyone believe that the Times would have covered the story outlined above with articles that bent over backwards to give the district attorney the benefit of the doubt, played down questions about his motivations, and regularly concluded with “shout-outs” regarding the accuser’s willingness to hang tough—coupled with sports columnists who compared the accused students to gangsters and drug dealers?

Calame, in short, appears unable or unwilling to consider how the Times’ failure in the lacrosse case—and having the thesis of a paper’s major article publicly dismissed as untrue surely constitutes a failure—was attributable to reporters and editors allowing their worldviews to distort the facts.

A summary of the specific material presented by Calame:

1.) Times editors are now rationalizing their performance through word games.

Times executive editor Bill Keller described the August 25 story in the following manner: “I think if you read the whole story you came away with a better understanding of what Nifong thought he had, but with continuing serious doubts about his case.” Matthew Purdy, the story’s editor, added that the “straight-from-memory” Gottlieb report formed the article’s spine because it “offered a fuller view of what Nifong had and perhaps what led him to believe he had a case.”

So the purpose of a 5,600-word, front-page story was to show “what Nifong thought he had”? If true, this claim raises grave doubts about the competence of Times journalists, since the article’s stated thesis was very different than what Keller and Purdy now describe. If false, this claim suggests a troubling willingness for Times editors to dissemble.

2.) Bolstering Nifong’s case.

One reason it is so hard to take seriously the explanations presented by Keller and Purdy is that Wilson’s article repeatedly slanted the evidence in ways highly favorable to Nifong—and in a manner that ultimately did not survive public scrutiny.

Two examples. (1) In his August 25 article, Wilson wrote, “The files show that aside from two brief early conversations with the police, she gave largely consistent accounts of being raped by three men in a bathroom.” In fact, as Joe Neff and others had reported, the accuser didn’t tell the same story twice, at any point in the process.

(2) In his August 25 article, Wilson marveled at the accuser’s performance in the April 4 lineup, in which “the full transcript shows some precise recollections, three weeks after a relatively brief encounter with a large group of white strangers.” In fact, as Joe Neff reported, most of those “precise recollections” were wrong.

Wilson and Neff had access to the same discovery file. How, then, could Wilson have gotten these basic facts so wrong, and slanted them so heavily in Nifong’s favor?

One clue, perhaps, dates to the evening of August 24. Just after his article went to press, Wilson e-mailed defense attorneys requesting a complete copy of the first 1,812 pages of the discovery file—that is, everything other than the Gottlieb report. He said he wanted to undertake a “more careful” and “re-reviewing” of the material. Yet his article stated that “the full files [were] reviewed by The New York Times.” Why would Wilson still have needed to obtain the discovery files after his major article, allegedly based on a thorough review of these same files, had gone to press?

3.) Burying the lede.

Calame’s article contains a stunning admission from Wilson: “Mr. Wilson said he had been told that the sergeant [Gottlieb] relied ‘largely’ on Officer Himan’s handwritten notes when the two of them met the accuser on March 16 of last year to ask her to describe her attackers.”

The only “news” in the public editor’s column, therefore, Calame buried in his 14th paragraph: Duff Wilson had an explanation of the Gottlieb report’s origins that should have raised enormous questions as to how the sergeant came up with descriptions wholly different from Himan’s—and yet the Times elected not to report this fact in the August 25 article.

"Just after the article went to press, Wilson e-mailed defense attorneys asking for a full copy of the discovery file other than the Gottlieb memo, for the purpose of "re-reviewing" this material--even though his article claimed that he had comprehensively reviewed these documents over an exteded period of time.")"Just after the article went to press, Wilson e-mailed defense attorneys asking for a full copy of the discovery file other than the Gottlieb memo, for the purpose of "re-reviewing" this material--even though his article claimed that he had comprehensively reviewed these documents over an exteded period of time.")

4) Factual errors.

Calame avoids mentioning that Wilson’s article contained four factual errors—each of which made Nifong’s case appear stronger than it actually was. To date, the Times has left three of these errors entirely uncorrected, and the fourth corrected in a misleading fashion.

The most serious of these errors involved the following passage: “The dancers stopped. An argument ensued. Using a racial epithet, someone yelled that they had asked for white dancers, not black ones. That much is agreed. It was 12:04 a.m. March 14.”

In fact, the statements of Kim Roberts, the three captains, and neighbor Jason Bissey did not agree with this statement—all said that a racial exchange occurred outside the house, around 12.45am, long after Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty had left the premises. The only two people who had made such a claim before Wilson affirmed it? Mike Nifong and Crystal Mangum. And Calame suggests that it was the critics who fostered “a perception of the paper as leaning toward Mr. Nifong”?

5) Calame’s selective standards.

In yesterday’s column, Calame maintained, “As public editor, I have sought to avoid evaluating opinion articles because I haven’t found a universally acceptable yardstick for measuring what is good opinion and what is bad. So my review excluded Times columnists—including the sports commentators critical of Duke—who may have held forth on the case.”

In his April 23, 2006 column on the Duke case, however, Calame adhered to a quite different standard. In that article, he stated that while he had a “nit” to “pick” with her March 31, 2006 column, “Selena Roberts, a Times sports columnist, had ample reason for her recent concern about a ‘code of silence.’” In fact, we know now that Roberts’ claim was wrong. The three captains voluntarily gave statements to police, along with DNA and their e-mail passwords; they also offered to take lie detector tests. Moreover, as Joe Neff has reported (a pattern should be evident here, in which the N&O consistently scooped the Times on this story), in the days before Roberts’ column, Nifong spurned repeated requests from different defense attorneys to meet with him. The “code of silence,” in short, was caused by Nifong’s behavior.

Since Calame had no problem defending sports columnists in 2006, why does he now consider them out of bounds for his critique? Could it be that even he can’t defend Roberts’ most recent effort?

---------

Based on their statements to Calame, neither Purdy nor Keller seems troubled by the paper’s performance. Yes, they suggest, perhaps the thesis of the August 25 story was a bit overstated, but they cite a June article by Wilson as indicative of the good reporting he did. Yet the June 12 piece did little more than summarize faults in Nifong’s case already made public by Joe Neff and the N&O, though the Times went out of its way to insinuate (inaccurately, as things turned out) that hidden evidence would bolster Nifong’s case. (“The defense has released evidence selectively,” wrote Wilson, “presumably showing only those parts that strengthen its public position.”) Original Times reporting—the front-page stories of late March and early April, Wilson’s August 25 article, slanted pieces in the fall—all tilted heavily toward Nifong.

Last fall, Calame’s predecessor as public editor, Dan Okrent, said, “The only thing we can look forward to now is what the Times will say to the accused once the charges are dropped, or once acquittals are delivered.”

Now we know. Calame’s column gives no indication that Times reporters, editors, or even the public editor believe that there was something wrong—seriously wrong—with the Times’ coverage of the case. Such a conclusion, of course, allows them to avoid exploring how the paper allowed its employees’ biases on issues relating to race, class, and gender to distort its search for the truth.

58 comments:

Anonymous said...

Back in August the NYT said that Nifong had a basis for the charges against the three lacrosse players. Now AG Cooper has said there was no basis whatsoever for the charges. Instead of finding a contradiction between these two dissimilar positions, the NYT has basically said their original article wasn't so bad. Huh?

Hyde Park, IL said...

KC - Write a letter to the editor - they probably won't publish it but the might.

Anonymous said...

Truth? The only "truth" the Times was looking for was whatever would support the meta-narrative that evil, athletic scions of white, capitalistic pig families abused a poor black woman of the underclass. Anything not fitting in the template was discarded or disregarded. And that's the truth.

Joe T. said...

I'd rather read the Weekly World News than the NY Times. Since both newspapers just make up stories, at least the WWN ones are more fun: Anna Nicole Smith is alive and in hiding; Bigfoot meeting the President, etc.

Anonymous said...

Does The New York Times have any shame?

Anonymous said...

Carolyn says:

I read that NY Times article when it came out last August and its defiant message was clear beyond a doubt - the lacrosse players were guilty and Nifong had a case against them.

7 months later, it is clear beyond a doubt that the players were always innocent and Nifong never had a case. Those are the facts.

The only thing the NYTimes now makes clear is that it has no intention of admitting those facts, let alone publishing them.

Anonymous said...

Duff has lied and crucified these boys since he got a "real" assignment, but we are to believe him on Poor Nurse Tara. Shameful

Anonymous said...

Tony Soprano has an interesting post on the Liestoppers forum about Sergeant Gottlieb. He shows through news coverage that Gottlieb was very involved in the case prior to Nifong's involvement. What can citizens do to get an investigation of Gottlieb's role in the frame-up?

Anonymous said...

NY Times is no longer the newspaper of record. Sadly, there's no other newspaper that can claim that distinction now.

Anonymous said...

12:17:00 has it right.
"Truth?! , we don't need no stinking truth!"
I tell you KC you are really something. You really have faith in the goodness of media. Your inquiries and diligence in digging out the original material in your reports showed the fecklessness of the msm reporters and their lazy self-serving reports. And still you believe in the search for truth. The news media believes it MAKES the truth. That is POWER. AND they are loath to relinquish it to the prols and bloggers. Please never give up. Veritas

Anonymous said...

Let's see, the NYT has decided that its coverage was fair, and the H-S has said that they always highlighted the holes in the case (well, at least since December). Everything was fine, let's move on to the next story...

AMac said...

KC asked:

Does anyone believe that the Times would have covered [a story of blacks victimized by race-baiters] with articles that bent over backwards to give the district attorney the benefit of the doubt, played down questions about his motivations, and regularly concluded with “shout-outs” regarding the accuser’s willingness to hang tough—coupled with sports columnists who compared the accused students to gangsters and drug dealers?

Why, yes, I can name a few such individuals! Let's put Brian Calame at the top of that list of the Faithful.

Calame may be a terrible disappointment to idealists, but his performance is no better and no worse than the jobs done by the Public Editors of the Baltimore Sun and the L.A. Times (to name two other papers).

I fail to see why a "Public Editor" should be seen as anything other than a Public Relations employee. They'll sometimes nip the hand that feeds them for a spelling error, but forthright prose about their employers' shortcomings would lead to cold shoulders at the Christmas party, and a career dead-end.

Calame gamely went to bat for his team. View him as a corporate flack instead of as the Times' last honest man, and you can appreciate his non-answer answers as a pretty good performance. Considering the material that Duff Wilson and Selena Roberts left for him.

luke said...

My all time favorite line from Duff Wilson was: "The prosecutor’s file, however, shows that, except in some initial contacts with the police, she gave a consistent account during that night and since then of how many men raped her.”
It was this single line that raised my antenna on the Duke case; I hadn't followed it before the Times article was linked on Drudge. I read that line to mean she didn't contradict herself after she finally settled on a story. It is such a great sentence that speaks volumes about Wilson's agenda.

jamil hussein said...

New York al-Times has always been a leftist propaganda mouthpiece and it has no intension to stop doing so. Before Nifong Hoax many smart democrats (KC included) supported NYT (apparently, because it bashed evil republicans and their views) but in the end, if you have morally corrupt propaganda outlet it will come after you, as well. People should never tolerate corrupt newsmedia or propaganda.

NYT has fabricated or forged stories on weekly basis and the story is always negative on conservative views. It never investigates democratic party corruption (Harry/Obama land deals, Sandy Berger stealing secret 9/11 documents from national archives etc) or say, UN corruption.
Sometimes it is about fabricated abortion story (which get busted by a pro-life blog and talk radio), sometimes it is about a corrupt gang88 DA (busted by a centrist blog), or police captain Jamil Hussein (heh) in Iraq telling fantastic lies about burned mosques (busted by military and blogs). It is funny when liberals bash Fox News and want to ban it. These liberals must live in a bizarro world where the exact opposite is always true, or at least they believe the fools who vote for them believe it.

Why anobody believes NYT is beyond me. It is just like CBS "News" or dailykos.

Anonymous said...

An on-line petition asking the New York Times to issue a public apology for its coverage of the Duke rape hoax can be found at http://www.petitiononline.com/nytethic/petition.html or at Liestoppers, http://liestoppers.blogspot.com/2007/04/nytimes-apology-petition.html

The petition was posted at Liestoppers on April 19.

I would appreciate someone converting one of the above addresses to a link, "New York Times Duke Lacrosse Apology Petition." Thanks.

The petition begins: "We, the undersigned, urge the New York Times to issue a public apology for its erroneous, inflammatory and irresponsible coverage of the Duke Lacrosse Case. We further appeal to the three Times journalists most directly involved in that coverage – Duff Wilson, Selena Roberts and Harvey Araton – to individually apologize for their reckless reporting and account for the harm it caused."

TruthHurts001 said...

New York Times Duke Lacrosse Apology Petition

New York Times Duke Lacrosse Apology Petition

bill anderson said...

K.C.,

The next time I see Calame,I will check his backside to see your boot print there. Had you booted him any harder, he would have had to go to the ER.

scott said...

You can't spell Calame without L-A-M-E.

It's the nature of the job of public editor, which is a sham concept from the get-go. If the public editor does too good a job fisking the reporting, he risks tipping off the readers as to what a piece of crap the paper is. They might stop buying it. Then to cut costs, management might eliminate the job of public editor.

Calame looks to be about the same age as Nifong -- you know, about 3 years away from getting his pension. Like Nifong, he'll do what he needs to do to ensure he gets it. Luckily, for Calame and all of us, that doesn't include framing innocent people for multiple felonies.

Is it not obvious to anyone who can think critically that the NYT and the H-S are 2 peas in a pod? As are all other newspapers. Run and staffed by people with an agenda, the reader gets the "news" based on that agenda. Caveat emptor. Better yet, stop being a buyer. Take what you can get for free. At least then you're paying what it is worth.

hman said...

I would go out on a limb and say that mid-June 2006 was the cut-off time for any good faith belief that there was a valid basis for the prosecution. For anyone following the details of this case, it simply became impossible to reconcile what Nifong was doing with the solid, publically available facts (and NC discovery laws ruled out Nifong-held secret facts).
In other words, the NYTs knew in August that this was all bogus unless all of them involved with this case were very, very dense. They seem dense for sure; but not that dense.
It is a sad realization that a major American Newspaper deliberately lied about an important story - over and over again. It is a realization that also explains why they make no concessions now to the truth. They have known the real truth all along but chose to put something quite different on their own front-page.

Richard Aubrey said...

It would be difficult to believe that even NYT readers actually believe the NYT's coverage.
Most, if not all, know better. Some still nod approvingly at the effort, and some are outraged.
But for the NYT to think anybody believes them is silly.

P. Rich said...

The old Grey Lady be shuckin and jivin.

It's not a pretty sight.

Anonymous said...

"I found that the past year’s articles generally reported both sides, and that most flaws flowed from journalistic lapses rather than ideological bias."


Ok so the New York Times covered both sides equally. The problem is that one side did not have any creditable evidence to support its conclusions therefore if you report both sides evenly you are biased.



“I have sought to avoid evaluating opinion articles because I haven’t found a universally acceptable yardstick for measuring what is good opinion and what is bad.”


I was taught that I had to back-up my opinions with facts and that if I failed to do so my opinion was considered unreasonable. If you use a flawed facts to support opinions then certainly you will have a “bad” opinion.

P. Rich said...

Make that "shukin," with apologies to the Johnny Lewis Quartet.

Anonymous said...

The New York Times should hire ex-Duke columnist Shadee Malaklou as fast as they can. I've never seen a better journalistic fit.

Anonymous said...

NY Times: "All the news that's fit to print" should be "All the news that fits our leftist agenda, we print" (and if the facts don't fit, we lie about them and make them fit anyway).

Anonymous said...

New Jersey Lawyer. I am no more holding my breath for an apology from the NY Times than I am from the Group of 88, Pres. Broadhead, the Duke administration, the governing officials of the City and County of Durham, or Michael Nifong.

eric said...

HMAN has it right. The NY times knowingly lied about the case.

The reason they lied is a lot like a rapper getting into
trouble with the police.
Street Creds

They had to be on the right thinking side of the issue. They had to defend the greater issue of class and race. They had to support their friends and allies, Broadhead and the Duke professors.

All that was more important than the guilt or innocence of 3 boys.

Anonymous said...

The NYT is a mere shadow of its former self. Reminds me of Miss Havisham in Dickens' Great Expectations. Dressed up in a rotted dress living in delusions of former glory.

A pitiful disgusting sight to behold.

Anonymous said...

Since everybody is criticizing the Times for their lack of apology, I think it is only fair that Ruth Sheehan and the N&O be commended for her apology this morning. It doesn't erase everything she did early on, but that doesn't mean she shouldn't get credit for taking a responsible and objective approach since then.

Gary Packwood said...

New York Times Has Written A Straddle Position on the Duke Lacrosse Case

If the Duke Lacrosse case was listed as a financial security we would debating the value of the security (Stock/Bond) at some future date.

I suggest that the New York Times does not see the Duke Lacrosse case as finished...and has written an 'option' on the future value of the case.

They have written a type of option recognized as a 'Straddle' where they are acknowledging that the value of the case could go up or down in the future ...but the up/down movement will NOT BE ...slight.

I'll bet that the 'expiry date' will be in one year or April 2008.

If the story value 'tanks' they will write an apology for being tricked...and take a hit.

If the story takes off they will write a special publication that will compete with KC's book...and take the accolades for printing ...All The News That's Fit to Print!

Their future position for increased value probably hinges on an (1) on campus conspiracy; (2) an on/off campus conspiracy or a (3) national conspiracy from Anger Studies professors/staff to destroy helmeted athletic programs or (4) a new educational model for women and their male friends or (5) a combination of any of the four.

This case is just too weird for the New York Times not to take a 'Straddle' position...in my opinion.
::
GP

Anonymous said...

I would suggest that Ted Vaden of the N&O got so many complaints about their early coverage that he rightly insisted that some who had been so vocal against the lacrosse team do some apologizing.

After all, Sheehan made such a big deal about her past history of having been a victim of rape. Her initial reactions, which seemed unduly personal, cannot be characterized as professional at all.

Sheehan's apology

Uh-huh......

Debrah

Anonymous said...

Imagine the following scenario: three African-American college students are charged with a crime for which almost no evidence exists. One has an air-tight, public, unimpeachable alibi. Their accuser is a white woman with a criminal record and major psychological problems.

Excellent analysis Professor. Race trumps all in the media, in education, in hiring, everywhere we look. Next is politics. How in the world did we get to this place? And, how can our society and culture quit living a lie?

Once the Hoaxers are put to bed your work will not be done. People like you, Professor, are the new leaders of our country.

Anonymous said...

I don't even worry about the New York Times anymore. They jumped the shark years ago.

Only those who are out of touch still consider them a prestigious newspaper. The people who run the Times have literally produced an archaic "gray lady" of journalism.

Like those old women who still walk around at social functions with a rat-like fur around their shoulders....straight from the '50s....the Times is SO over.

I knew they had gone downhill for good when they took columnist Maureen Dowd off the Sunday roster. Even though I often disagree with her, she is the most entertaining columnist they have......

.....aside from horror-film-looking-character Paul Krugman.

That guy is brutally strange.

Debrah

Anonymous said...

Remember Gloria Swanson's performance in "Sunset Boulevard" where the poor deluded woman says "I'm ready for my close-up, Mr. DeMille?" That's analogous to NYT pretending they're a credible news source. Why in God's name would any thinking person ever patronize that rag is beyond me.

Anonymous said...

Here's a copy of a letter I just wrote to Byron Calame regarding his column yesterday:

Mr. Calame --

I was disappointed in your evaluation of the Times's coverage. You pulled your punches to such an extent as to disserve the Times, in my opinion. The paper needs a louder wake-up call than your article.

I will not attempt to paraphrase Professor Johnson's critique of your evaluation, at http://durhamwonderland.blogspot.com/2007/04/times-no-harm-no-foul.html . If you print or respond to readers' letters, please include Professor Johnson's column as one of them. In particular, I hope you will focus on these three paragraphs:

"Who does Calame think he’s fooling? Imagine the following scenario: three African-American college students are charged with a crime for which almost no evidence exists. One has an air-tight, public, unimpeachable alibi. Their accuser is a white woman with a criminal record and major psychological problems. They are prosecuted by a race-baiting district attorney who violates myriad procedures while seizing upon the case amidst an election campaign in a racially divided county.
"Does anyone believe that the Times would have covered the story outlined above with articles that bent over backwards to give the district attorney the benefit of the doubt, played down questions about his motivations, and regularly concluded with “shout-outs” regarding the accuser’s willingness to hang tough-coupled with sports columnists who compared the accused students to gangsters and drug dealers?
"Calame, in short, appears unable or unwilling to consider how the Times’ failure in the lacrosse case-and having the thesis of a paper’s major article publicly dismissed as untrue surely constitutes a failure-was attributable to reporters and editors allowing their worldviews to distort the facts."

I will add one point in addition to those made by Prof. Johnson. Over the past year, the factual coverage of this case on his blog has been infinitely superior to that in the New York Times. It is note-worthy that an amateur working in his spare time so outperformed Times professional reporters, editors, and fact-checkers. If the Times can't do its job better than an unpaid dabbler, what's the point of subscribing?

Anonymous said...

12:24
Good job.

Anonymous said...

Others have stated it earlier but it needs to be repeated: TRUTH. Over and over the NYT lied about the lacrosse case. They have lied about other things as well.

Now someone please tell me when I should believe anything that they print.

Phillip said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Phillip said...

I think the fact the NY Times even admitted they MIGHT have done anything wrong is a giant leap forward for this liberal paper. Don't get me wrong this is almost as bad as Nifong's non-apology apology.

Purps said...

I will add one point in addition to those made by Prof. Johnson. Over the past year, the factual coverage of this case on his blog has been infinitely superior to that in the New York Times. It is note-worthy that an amateur working in his spare time so outperformed Times professional reporters, editors, and fact-checkers. If the Times can't do its job better than an unpaid dabbler, what's the point of subscribing?

Very well said.

Anonymous said...

The New York Times has done incalculable damage to America.

And, yet, walk into STARBUCKS and what do you see sitting for sale next to the cash registers? Yes, printed copies of the NYT.

Is the management of STARBUCKS sympathetic to the agenda of the Times or is it merely oblivious to the damage that this rag does to our country?

Mike in Nevada

Anonymous said...

The public editor's column was so disappointing. I can only conclude that they don't even care to be a credible news source. I kept hoping that they would care enough of about their credibility to say to their readers, with conviction, honesty, and humility that "we got seriously carried away with one side of this story and thereby missed the truth even when the truth was becoming too obvious to ignore."

But they have proven themselves incapable of that. So I won't be throwing good money after bad. For me, when I read a NYT news story, the strongest reaction I will have is, "that's interesting if by chance it turns about to be true."

Anonymous said...

Walk into Srarbucks?

Didn't like the way a Starbucks manager insisted on collecting money for bottled water before 911 first responders could give it to people on the street in shock.

It is foolish to support Starbucks. Thanks for another great reason.

Anonymous said...

I can't do without Starbucks Frappuccino.

Who cares what newspapars are in carrels next to the cash register? You know that you're being screwed, price-wise, before you walk inside the door; however, they do sell excellent coffee products.

Debrah

Anonymous said...

Many of you are to young to remember, but when Starbucks opened, The NYT was the paper of record. I would replace it with the WSJ - the company has not conferred with me.

Anonymous said...

Every person and organization in the world except reporters and the media make mistakes or errors; reporters and the media only commit "lapses in judgment." Must be great to be essentially perfect, and get paid to throw stones in public print and over the airwaves every day at those billions of lesser mortals who do the real work and continually make all those terrible, unconscionable, biased, prejudiced, stupid mistakes. When was the last time the big media publicly gave an elected official, a soldier/sailor/airman/marine, or a corporation CEO a pass on a mistake because it was just a "lapse of judgment?" People like Calame are so far removed from the real world that they just don't get it.

Anonymous said...

This is a truly shameful article, but bear in mind that Calame is not the final arbiter nor the conscience of the Times. In fact, he's proven to be quite a cipher:

http://www.slate.com/id/2141404/

The worse news is that this is likely the final word, unless Brooks or some other bigfoot at the Times picks this up. I'm not holding my breath.

SG

Anonymous said...

I remember always hearing the saying when someone was asked why the wanted to be a Journalist and it was "To change the world." Unfortunately that isn't the job of a journalist, that job should be to report the truth and leave your personal beliefs/opinions out of it.

In the NY Times their opinion page bleeds over to all the pages of their newspaper. If a story doesn't fit with their agenda they don't cover it or spin it so that it does, never mind if the truth is lost in the process. It is always the same: Democrats good, Republicans evil (unless they are criticizing other Republicans).

The weekly standard did a parody of the New York Times several years ago after all the classified things the Times has revealed. The paper was dated December 24 1776 with the headline "Washington to secretly cross Delaware!" and then gave details of the whole operation. But the best thing was the logo of the NY Times: "All the news that fits our views."

scott said...

1:38 PM Mike in Nevada

Makes sense to me that Starbucks would have the NYT available. They know sub-standard when they see it. Starbucks is to coffee what the NYT is to news reporting.

Anonymous said...

want to bet that the Lebanese med student is an affirmative action case?

remember shadee makalou?

rod allison said...

The Times will always have a base of politically like-minded customers, who will proudly read the Times at the Starbucks in places like Scarsdale, the Upper West Side, Shaker Heights, Ann Arbor, and Evanston, etc.

But as the Times continues to take credibility hits, their position as a widely respected authority, or "paper of record" is history.

They will take another hit this fall, when a NYT Bestseller describes just how badly their coverage of the Duke case was distorted because of their bias/agenda.

They cant reverse the trend, because they refuse to acknowledge it.

Their business operation is sinking along with their professional stature:

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/bc?t=5y&s=NYT&l=on&z=m&q=l&c=gci&c=%5EDJI

Its not just the new media and alternative sources. People didn't have to abandon them for the new media, and wouldn't have as quickly if they had offered an honest, quality product.

AS it is, the HMS Pinchafore is sinking like the Titanic.

Anonymous said...

Debrah is absolutely correct re Times jumping the shark

The Times has been made a joke by Pinch Sulzberger, an unintelligent, uncreative, diversity-pimp-loving nepotism case.

That's it. It's not complicated.

And the Times has not always been liberal, even under the Sulzbergers.

Polanski

Anonymous said...

Phillip,

The Times is not a liberal paper.

Polanski

Anonymous said...

"The Times is not a liberal paper."

Agreed. It was once and isn't now.

I doubt if more than 2-3 commenters above read the paper version, or they would see what really happened.

Sulzberger (something of a rightie himself) headed for the center and beyond, back when the paper went national and took on board several righties (like Calame and Brooks) who infuriated the loyal readership.

Its swing to the right cost it many followers and it is now in the same position as Faux News: scrambling as the majority of the population is moving left.

To the ideologue above who has ranted on in maybe 10 threads here about the Times business model and drop in stock price: go do a comparison with Dow Jones, owner of the Wall Street Journal. Not so very different.

rod allison, detroit said...

As a point of comparison, I checked the NYT stock price over the last five years against Dow Jones, Tribune, and Gannet.

I'm not sure where "not so very different" begins, but the Times is dead last.

Anonymous said...

The paper is far left to me. My daughter, the Marxist would not be a faithful readed is it were moderate or right wing.

Anonymous said...

Totally stupid analysis. I got my info on the case from the Times and always had doubt that the jocks were guilty.

You might as well blame those jocks for being so stupid to have a black stripper at their party as blame the New York Times for the problem.

The real fault lies with Nifong & his office. So get real, Mr. Brooklyn Radical

Anonymous said...

Anonymous wrote: Didn't like the way a Starbucks manager insisted on collecting money for bottled water before 911 first responders could give it to people on the street in shock.

Like so many urban myths this has been totally debunked. But repeating it in a posting about inaccurate reporting by a newspaper is a delicious irony, so thanks for that.