CNN acknowledges fault in Sanjay Gupta operation story

After being called to task for inaccurate reporting by an international news organization, CNN on Thursday corrected its account of an operation performed in earthquake-ravaged Nepal by its chief medical correspondent, Sanjay Gupta.

According to the correction, which was appended Thursday to a tale of the operation written by CNN digital producer Tim Hume, the network misidentified which patient Gupta operated on:

An earlier version of this story, first published April 27, 2015, incorrectly identified the patient that Dr. Sanjay Gupta operated on after the Nepal earthquake. We regret the error. After investigating the details of the surgery, we confirmed Dr. Gupta performed brain surgery on Sandhya Chalise, as reported in the original version of this story. We have updated the story below with the correct information.

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With a new multimedia project, CNN Digital is finding odd, small stories from around the country

CNN Digital launched “Great American Stories” on Wednesday with five stories from around the country. The multimedia, cross-platform project tells the stories of “the unexpected places and unforgettable characters who’ve helped define our nation,” according to a press release.

Among them, a varsity esports squad, a town that blocks cell phone reception, and a town that all lives in the same building:

The series will publish new stories each Wednesday through September. Read more


ISIS-sex-toy-flag creator slams CNN

The Guardian

On Saturday, CNN reported on “an ISIS flag among a sea of rainbow colors,” at London’s Pride parade. It wasn’t an ISIS flag, though, but one made with images of sex toys.

Paul Coombs, creator of that flag, wrote a piece Tuesday for The Guardian about why he created it.

It has become a potent symbol of brutality, fear and sexual oppression. If I wanted to try and stimulate a dialogue about the ridiculousness of this ideology, the flag was key.

Coombs wrote he was approached by police officers, who thought the flag was funny but could put him in danger if people didn’t look closely. So Coombs put it away.

Several hours passed before I noticed spreading news that CNN reported on the flag as though it was an actual Isis banner, not a piece of cloth covered in sex toys.

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No, CNN says, it won’t ‘host’ Clinton event with Jake Tapper

USA Today reported Wednesday that CNN show host Jake Tapper was erroneously listed as a “’speaker” at a Clinton Global Initiative event in Denver next month.

On Thursday, CNN further amended its relationship to the gathering.

Following the newspaper’s inquiry to CNN, the designation of “speaker” had been removed from the GCI website. However, Tapper remains as a moderator of a panel, “The Business Case for Investing in America’s Workforce.”

On Thursday, I brought to the apparent initial attention of CNN that the panel was further listed as a “GCI Conversation Hosted by CNN.” That suggested a distinct partnership between the network and the Clinton organization.

CNN indicated the reference is wrong. It said Tapper is an unpaid moderator at a gathering that will also include his interview of former President Bill Clinton for on-air use. Read more


C-Span teaming with the networks to cover presidential campaign

C-span's red bus

C-span’s red bus

C-SPAN is teaming with the major news networks to share personnel and other costs while covering even more events in real time along the campaign trail.

Ted Johnson, a political reporter for Variety, walked up the steps of the iconic bright red C-SPAN school bus parked on the floor of the national cable TV convention. He just wanted to say hi.

And why not? After all, if you’re a political journalist, the same just-the-facts network that’s long inspired “Saturday Night Live” skits is very much a key part of your reporting arsenal.

Now, financial necessity appears to be the mother of C-SPAN-bred invention, all probably to the enhanced benefit of reporters and politics junkies gearing up for the 2016 presidential campaign.

And it may be particularly true for the large number of reporters whose outlets can’t afford to have them on the road for appreciable, if even any, time due to budget cuts. Read more


Without fact checking, ISIS’ messages go unchallenged

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, senior fellow with the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, speaks to a senate panel about social media and terrorism. (screengrab from

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, senior fellow with the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, speaks to a senate panel about social media and terrorism. (screengrab from

Media worldwide have at times exaggerated the strength of ISIS terrorists due to a combination of their use of social media and an inability of the press to do effective warzone fact checking, a U.S. Senate panel was told Thursday.

A Senate hearing Thursday on ISIS briefly touched upon press coverage, with one expert noting rampant reports that began last fall of ISIS taking over the Libyan port city of Derna.

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, said that ISIS’ “social media dominance” led to the widespread reports that it had taken over the city, replete with images of its flag over at least one major government building. Read more

Screen Shot 2015-05-01 at 2.36.48 PM

Networks use drones to cover Nepal quake

(Screen shot from NBC's drone coverage of Nepal.)

(Screen shot from NBC’s drone coverage of Nepal.)

NBC News’ Miguel Almaguer used dramatic video captured by a drone in his reporting from Nepal this week.

The images soaring above the ruins of destroyed temples in Kathmandu are a demonstration of how valuable these drones can be in adding context and scale, even while they are currently banned for commercial use in the U.S. It is the third time in recent months, NBC News has used unmanned drones to report a story.

NBC included the images in NBC Nightly News and Today. It also included a version just for online. NBC also used the video to show the damage of some of Nepal’s towering historic temples.

“NBC has been interested in drones for some time so we brought the drone into Nepal and worked with local contacts there to be sure we stayed out of the way of authorities and rescue workers.” said NBC Senior Vice President Editorial Janelle Rodriguez. Read more


Journalists attacked and injured in Baltimore riots

At least nine journalists have been beaten or injured in the Baltimore riots this week — including several Monday night.

Casey Harper, a reporter with the Daily Caller Foundation, says he took a liquor bottle to the head amid a “mob of attackers.”

Trey Yingst, a reporter for News2Share tells me that he was traveling with Daily Caller journalists Conner Wolf, Casey Harper and Grae Stafford when Wolf was slugged in the face by a rioter. Read more

Chris Christie

Chris Christie not so available to the New Jersey press

The Associated Press | CNN

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie answers questions from the traveling press as he arrives to have lunch at Tacos El Caminero in Mexico City, Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie answers questions from the traveling press as he arrives to have lunch at Tacos El Caminero in Mexico City, Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

New Jersey governor Chris Christie has failed to hold an open-ended press conference since November 12, mostly restricting his public presence to town hall meetings and prepackaged videos sent out by his media relations team, The Associated Press writer Jill Colvin reports.

“The access has just been minimal at best,” New Jersey Press Association executive director George White told The Associated Press.

Christie’s office responded that his numerous town hall meetings with constituents, as well as his monthly hour-long radio appearance on NJ 101.5 and interviews with individual reporters, prove that the governor is still accessible and answerable to the public. Read more


4 questions to keep in mind while reading Columbia University’s review of ‘A Rape On Campus’

On Sunday, Rolling Stone published Columbia Journalism School’s investigation into “A Rape On Campus,” the magazine’s November retelling of a gang-rape during a party at a University of Virginia fraternity house.

We know that the review, which was led by Columbia Journalism School dean Steve Coll, will be “long and damning“; that Sabrina Rubin Erdely, the author, is expected to apologize; that the magazine’s editors and fact-checkers will not be fired as a result of the article.

Here are four questions to keep in mind as you read the article:

What efforts were made to contact the accused?
In a Dec. 1 Washington Post story, Rolling Stone editor Sean Woods said the magazine did not talk to the alleged attackers because staffers “could not reach them.” But nonetheless, he was “satisfied that these guys exist and are real.”

Since the article was published, the fraternity whose house the assault allegedly took place in denied hosting a social event the evening of the alleged assault, and journalists have been unable to reach any man who supposedly lured Jackie to her assault. Read more

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