« The Most Important Story of the Week? [someone] | Main | Family Discount: NYT Editorial Repeats Central Claim of MoveOn Ad Very Next Day »
September 14, 2007

Multiple Layers, Etc.: ABC Reopens Investigation On Reporter Who Faked Interviews, After Previously Finding "They Absolutely Checked Out"

Not just a dinky little newsletter like TNR. ABCNews, which certainly has the resources to fact-check, apparently doesn't even bother to see if its reporters have even met the interview subjects they quote.

Now, in fairness, it seems these made-up interviews occurred after he'd been fired by ABCNews -- though he of course still worked in the media, publishing pieces in French journals and the Times of London. But they had previous suspicions about his stories and determined, after (TNR-like) "re-reporting" on his reports, claiming "they absolutely checked out" and giving his reportage a clean bill of health.

Obvious points:

1) They did not check before publication.

and

2) Given he simply invents interviews wholesale, it is extremely unlikely that everything he "reported" for ABCNews was true, and hence their claims that all his reports "absolutely checked out" seem rather naive. If someone isn't looking for evidence of a cheating spouse, and wants to believe that spouse is faithful, obviously they're not going to come with quite the level of skepticism needed to reveal the infidelity.

At any rate, here are your Intellectual Superiors, The Deciders, in action again. Proving once again why only they are qualified to evaluate information for newsworthiness, reliability, and "context."

ABC News said yesterday that it would begin a second investigation into more than five years of news reports that relied on information from a consultant, Alexis Debat, who has been revealed to be the author of faked interviews.

The interviews, published in a French journal, were said to have been done with prominent political figures, including former President Bill Clinton and Senator Barack Obama. [They deny the interviews -- ace.]

“We going at this again with a vengeance,” said Brian Ross, the ABC correspondent who was involved in most of the reports that used information provided by Mr. Debat, whom ABC hired in November 2001.

ABC fired Mr. Debat in June after discovering that his claims of having earned a doctorate from the Sorbonne were false. The network then investigated the reports Mr. Debat had participated in and found “they absolutely checked out,” Mr. Ross said.

Now, however, ABC is taking a further look into information Mr. Debat provided. Mr. Ross said ABC had dispatched an investigator to Pakistan to go over details of reports in which Mr. Debat provided information. At the same time, The Associated Press reported last night that it also was investigating three news reports that relied on Mr. Debat for information.

The renewed scrutiny has been driven by revelations about Mr. Debat after a French news Web site, Rue 89, reported this week that an interview supposedly with Senator Obama was entirely made up. Mr. Debat, who could not be reached last night, sent an e-mail message to ABC yesterday saying the allegations against him “are slanderous.”

He told The Washington Post Wednesday that an intermediary had spoken with Mr. Obama. But representatives for Mr. Obama denied that he spoke with anyone connected to Mr. Debat.

Subsequently, other figures whose interviews appeared under Mr. Debat’s byline in the French magazine Politique Internationale have come forward to say they never spoke to him. These included Mr. Clinton; Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg; Alan Greenspan, the former Federal Reserve chairman; Bill Gates, the chairman of Microsoft; and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Since his departure from ABC News in June, Mr. Debat has continued to work as a senior fellow for national security and terrorism at the Nixon Center in Washington. He was quoted as a knowledgeable source in an article in The Times of London this month, saying that American military forces were planning attacks that would demolish “the entire Iranian military.” He has also been quoted by many newspapers and news services.

Thanks to Chad.


digg this
posted by Ace at 02:45 PM

| Access Comments




Recent Comments
qdpsteve: "Not foist!! ..."

Grump928(C): "[i]I just found two cans of sauerkraut that is two ..."

qdpsteve: "Foist!! ..."

The Political Hat: "Progressive Utopia: Fake Science; Evil Words; Auth ..."

penguin with ice cream on his face: "[i]I'm sealed on the Privy[/i]Interesting. ..."

qdpsteve: "Bertram: will the commercial feature Ted Nugent?? ..."

Skandia Recluse: "Posted by: Skandia Recluse at October 19, 2017 09: ..."

Pug Mahon, Gentleman Drunkard: "Looking like a Yankees-Dodgers series. YYYAAAAA ..."

Bertram Cabot, Jr.: " [i]Just saw a commercial for Abby's...venison sa ..."

Aetius451AD Work Laptop: "Murdering millions of people from ideological hatr ..."

boulder terlit hobo: "here's Macc Lads for the 'nettes - https://www. ..."

W. J. Clinton: "[i]How bulgy is the can? Posted by: Bitter Clinge ..."

Recent Entries
Search


MuNuvians
Polls! Polls! Polls!
Frequently Asked Questions
The (Almost) Complete Paul Anka Integrity Kick
Top Top Tens
Greatest Hitjobs

The Ace of Spades HQ Sex-for-Money Skankathon
A D&D Guide to the Democratic Candidates
Margaret Cho: Just Not Funny
More Margaret Cho Abuse
Margaret Cho: Still Not Funny
Iraqi Prisoner Claims He Was Raped... By Woman
Wonkette Announces "Morning Zoo" Format
John Kerry's "Plan" Causes Surrender of Moqtada al-Sadr's Militia
World Muslim Leaders Apologize for Nick Berg's Beheading
Michael Moore Goes on Lunchtime Manhattan Death-Spree
Milestone: Oliver Willis Posts 400th "Fake News Article" Referencing Britney Spears
Liberal Economists Rue a "New Decade of Greed"
Artificial Insouciance: Maureen Dowd's Word Processor Revolts Against Her Numbing Imbecility
Intelligence Officials Eye Blogs for Tips
They Done Found Us Out, Cletus: Intrepid Internet Detective Figures Out Our Master Plan
Shock: Josh Marshall Almost Mentions Sarin Discovery in Iraq
Leather-Clad Biker Freaks Terrorize Australian Town
When Clinton Was President, Torture Was Cool
What Wonkette Means When She Explains What Tina Brown Means
Wonkette's Stand-Up Act
Wankette HQ Gay-Rumors Du Jour
Here's What's Bugging Me: Goose and Slider
My Own Micah Wright Style Confession of Dishonesty
Outraged "Conservatives" React to the FMA
An On-Line Impression of Dennis Miller Having Sex with a Kodiak Bear
The Story the Rightwing Media Refuses to Report!
Our Lunch with David "Glengarry Glen Ross" Mamet
The House of Love: Paul Krugman
A Michael Moore Mystery (TM)
The Dowd-O-Matic!
Liberal Consistency and Other Myths
Kepler's Laws of Liberal Media Bias
John Kerry-- The Splunge! Candidate
"Divisive" Politics & "Attacks on Patriotism" (very long)
The Donkey ("The Raven" parody)
News/Chat
Archives
Powered by
Movable Type 2.64