Fabrication allegations haven't disqualified Liane Membis from beauty pageant

New York Amsterdam News

Liane Membis, the Wall Street Journal intern fired for fabricating sources, is still representing Connecticut in the Miss Black America pageant. Aleta Anderson, executive producer of the pageant, tells Oulimata Ba that she spoke with Membis after she was fired.

“In my conversation with her she denies the allegations,” Anderson said. “Her claim is that that’s her actual source on the bridge when she was writing the story.”

The Journal said in an editor's note that Membis fabricated many of the sources in a story about the re-opening of a pedestrian bridge in Manhattan.

Membis' denial doesn't exactly square with what she told the Yale Daily News:

“For me, I know personally it was an honest reporting mistake that I made,” Membis said. “This is definitely something I’ve never done before.”

Anderson said the quotations sound authentic to her. "In my opinion people really do talk like that ... I don’t have any verification that her story is incorrect. ... And she is worthy to have written for the Wall Street Journal”

Previous: Huffington Post removes Liane Membis piece it says was fabricated (Poynter)

Related: Woman suing Hearst for unpaid internship at Harper's Bazaar now suing fashion designer for similar claim (New York Post) | Hearst is fighting whether lawsuit will proceed as a class-action (U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York)

  • Steve Myers

    Steve Myers was the managing editor of Poynter.org until August 2012, when he became the deputy managing editor and senior staff writer for The Lens, a nonprofit investigative news site in New Orleans.


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