Friday, November 14, 2008

Why I Don't Trust the Media, Part 1000: Palin-Africa Story a Hoax

Last week, several media outlets floated a "story" with some shocking details. Sarah Palin, according to a McCain campaign "insider," did not know that Africa was a continent. The alleged insider, Martin Eisenstadt, identified himself as a specialist at the Harding Institute for Freedom and Democracy. Unfortunately, neither Eisenstadt nor the Harding organization actually exists. It was all a hoax, according to a report on CBSNews.Com. Although any media with a good research department could have easily revealed the falsity of the story, MSNBC rushed to get the message on the airwaves. Pitiful.

"Eisenstadt" has fooled several other media outlets and blogs, including the Los Angeles Times, the New Republic, and the wretched HuffingtonPost blog. Of course, even the media have made up stuff during this election cycle. See, e.g., Washington Post Proclaims That "Sarah Palin Picks Ferraro as Favorite Vice President." Shocking -- Yes. Truthful -- No. The media are about as trustworthy as the stock market at this point.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Why I don't trust the Blogosphere part 1M: Africa Story NOT Hoax, only claim of source

The "Eisenstadt Hoax", even according to the CBS article you cite, was only a false claim of being the Fox source. It does not go to whether the Fox quote was real or not. Fox has in fact said that "Eisenstadt" was not the source of their reporting.
To quote your CBS story:
"The hoax was limited to the identity of the source in the story about Palin - not the Fox News story itself. While Palin has denied that she mistook Africa for a country, the veracity of that report was not put in question by the revelation that Eisenstadt is a phony"

Your post makes one wonder if "Eisenstadt's" disinformation campaign has had its intended results.

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