Confusion reigns in reporting of Boston ‘arrest’

There have been conflicting media reports about whether a suspect has been arrested in connection with the Boston Marathon explosions. The reports are confusing, but we’re working to sort through them and draw lessons from the mistakes. The coverage is a reminder of the challenges of reporting breaking news story quickly and accurately. Here is how the information has played out so far.

Here’s a Storify of how the media reports have played out.

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  • Clayton Burns

    These events are falling into a strange pattern.

    From the description of the video evidence that is on The New York Times site, I think that it is odd that nobody noticed what was going down. Odd, but predictable.

    If I were the President, I would audit American practices from the ground up. In education, the systems are incoherent.

    Let’s put forward one concrete and sensible program that could be encompassed by people who are not totally distracted. (All of the information that you need about American culture is in The New York Times.)

    Some key universities such as Georgetown, Columbia, and Yale should take the responsibility to design powerful summer school courses for students at the ends of grades 9-12, onsite and online, so that they could learn how to assimilate The New York Times every day and collate information.

    They should spend four summers–so as to create latency–on a very large subject in History (I recommend the Third Reich), reading carefully biographies of Hitler, Himmler, and Heydrich. They should not bother with any school books or write any silly multiple choice exams.

    In America, if students excelled in the four-summer eight-week-per History and Political Science courses, with associated Literature and Music, they should get preferential admission to Harvard, Stanford, or any good university. (Unless the places have been taken up by fraudulent preferences already.)

    The systems of education in America are hectic, so that instead of having sound practices in essential subjects such as History, English, and Psychology, we have wild and incoherent trash, a simulacrum of learning that has severe downstream effects. Such as cynicism and the helpless distraction that will prevent a police force from seeing what is going on right under its inattention.

    Academic performance is wretched. Bruce Hoffman should be fired from Georgetown. He is the worst excuse for a terrorism expert, but he keeps getting quoted in The New York Times as if he were Plato. He is also so gutless that he does not respond to comment.

    If I were the President, instead of compounding problems with ghoulish appearances after the tragedies, I would do something about it.

    He could work on education for the CIA, the FBI, and police. There is no excuse for the obsolescence. How anyone could read “Class 11″ and not realize how bad CIA education is must remain a puzzle.