By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Today’s media scandal

How was it that the names of players who were not in the Mitchell Report wound up being identified as steroid users earlier in the day? As Dan Shaughnessy writes in the Boston Globe, “Some of the names were pretty interesting. Where do those players go to reclaim their reputations?”

By many accounts, the false positives originated with WNBC in New York, which posted a correction late in the afternoon, after George Mitchell had finally released his report. But was WNBC alone, with others merely following the station’s lead? Or were there others who also broke this toxic non-story?

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  1. Steve

    That report was all over the net. Here’s the report posted to at 11:19 AM. No source given.If you Google for “Farnsoworth” (a typo on the list) you’ll find lots and lots of examples of the list posted to discussion websites. I haven’t found one that gives a source – the thing just got cut and pasted all around. I’ll keep looking for something that gives any sort of attribution.

  2. Anonymous

    interesting that (only) the phony list fingered several prominent Sox – four that I can remember, only one still with the team –

  3. mike_b1

    No difference between inaccurate reports about athletes’ alleged malfeasance vs. those in other walks of life. Happens every day. Just watch Fox News.

  4. Steve

    The Smoking Gun is on the case. Although WNBC is getting a lot of the “credit”, Deadspin had the (phony) list 7 minutes before the WNBC story moved.And even the usenet report I cited above was posted before WNBC (which was timestamped 11:23 AM).

  5. liamstliam

    I guess the reason I like your blog so much is that we think alike.I posted that same question to yesterday.;)

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