Sun-Times critic fired after leaving Glee Live! early, mentioning song that wasn't performed

Chicago Tribune | Chicago Sun-Times

Chicago Sun-Times veteran Paige Wiser was let go after her "Glee Live!" concert review in Sunday's paper mentioned one song that wasn't performed and described another that she didn't see. "I'm at fault," she says "I do understand what a big deal this was. I am ashamed, and it's just a matter of making bad decisions when you're exhausted." Wiser, who had been with the Sun-Times for 17 years, explains what happened:

I was told my kids' cutesy reactions would be welcome, so I brought along my 6- and 7-year-old. Jack nearly decapitated himself falling off his seat, and Audrey started murmuring "I'm going to throw up" 10 songs into the set. I made her stick it out for three more songs, saying "This is Mommy's job!," but she looked so green I finally shoved the half-full cotton candy bag at her to throw up in, and hustled her out of there. What I should have done was written that I had to leave early, but I didn't want to let the paper down, so I tried to make the review seem complete by including the encore "Friday" that I'm familiar with. Big mistake. I didn't see it there, so it was a lie.

Wiser's former colleague, Robert Feder writes:

Wiser said she’d been under intense pressure, citing chronic headaches, a car accident in which she’d broken a finger, and an experience with vertigo while covering Oprah Winfrey’s May 17 Farewell Spectacular from a skybox at the United Center.

Sun-Times editor-in-chief Don Hayner tells readers that "accuracy and honesty in reporting are essential parts of the promise we make to our readers. We regret the incident and apologize."

Did the paper overreact by firing her? Submit your vote.

  • Jim Romenesko

    From 1999 to 2011, Jim Romenesko maintained the Romenesko page for the Poynter Institute, a Florida-based non-profit school for journalists. Poynter hired him in August of 1999, after seeing his, a hobby site he started in May of 1999.


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