N&R corrections

I wasn’t the only reader who questioned some of the facts in Ed Hardin’s Sunday front-pager on First Horizon stadium. 

Don Moore (the other one), seeing as he was in line at 4:30p for the 7:00p game, questioned Hardin’s statement about throngs of fans ”standing in the streets” waiting to get in “more than two hours” before the game started.  Don says in the comments to my post, “I don’t know what game Ed attended Saturday; but it was not in Greensboro…”

Regarding Hardin’s mention of Don Mattingly being a contributor to the1981 attendance record at War Memorial Stadium that was broken Saturday night, commenter Mickey McLean says it ain’t so, “…Don Mattingly played for the Hornets in 1980, not 1981“  McLean also points out that there is no Edgewater Street anywhere near the stadium – it’s Edgeworth.  Those mistakes have been corrected in the online version of the column.

Lastly, my contention that Hardin’s statement regarding where the money for building the stadium actually came from could have been a “Freudian slip” must have been incorrect because the original phrase “…the park was built with public money” has now been changed to “… the park was built with private money” in the online version of the column also.  No mention of my argument that there was a “public” or at least a “quasi-public” tint to much of the money utilized to build the place.

To his credit, Editor John Robinson made a comment about the mistakes in the column, calling them, “Bad mistakes that shouldn’t have made their way into the paper. We corrected them in the online version and will correct them in the paper tomorrow.”

The corrections didn’t make today’s print edition but I’m confident they will be there soon… but… the way the online corrections were made points out a difference between how such things are handled in the blogosphere and how they are handled by the print media.

Weblog ethics dictate that when an error is made in a published post, it should remain in its original form.  Weblog corrections are normally made through the use of an editing note acknowledging the error followed by the corrected information (and sometimes citing where the correct information came from).  In the corrected Ed Hardin online column there are no editing notes, the words were simply changed without comment.

In my opinion, the correcting of erroneous information in a public fashion has been one of the underlying reasons for the rise in credibility, and ensuing popularity, of serious weblogs.  Since increased credibility and popularity are presumed goals of the N&R, perhaps they should consider the adoption of this practice for their growing online efforts not only for their in-house weblogs, but also for their columns and articles.

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