The corrections, continued

Just a few more dateline problems, editing errors and minor examples of moral turpitude from the nation's newspaper of record.


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Jake Tapper
May 29, 2003 3:23AM (UTC)

Due to recent events, the editorial staff at the New York Times has been reviewing a number of stories about which we have received complaints in order to verify their authenticity. The following is the first in a series of clarifications and corrections we are offering so as to continue to be the paragon of journalistic virtue everyone knows we are, despite all the carping, which mostly stems from envy and the occasional unavoidable error, including the following:

A picture caption on April 12, 2003, with an article about Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the prime minister of Turkey, featured a photograph of a turkey from the annual White House Thanksgiving "pardon the turkey" ceremony. Mr. Erdogan was Turkey's first Islamist prime minister, while the turkey pictured is a North American Meleagris gallopavo ultimately eaten by a family in Scranton, Pa., despite the presidential pardon it received. We regret the error.

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A story published on March 12, 2002, about President Rutherford B. Hayes misstated a number of details about his presidency. He was the 19th president, not the 17th; he was born in Ohio, not Iowa; he lost the popular vote but won the electoral vote in his 1876 presidential race against Gov. Samuel Tilden, not the other way around. Additionally, President Hayes never appeared in any pornographic movies -- homosexual, "snuff" or otherwise -- as far as can be ascertained. We regret the errors.

A report in our Food section on Feb. 2, 1996, about chicken-fried steak with gravy may have accidentally created a impression about its healthfulness contrary to what was intended. In actuality, each serving has 466 calories with 32 grams of fat, not 20 calories with 0 grams of fat. It is not particularly part of a healthy diet, despite the conclusion some of our readers reached based upon the sentence beginning "Part of any healthy diet." We regret the error. Moreover, this correction was delayed by an editing lapse, which we also regret.

Our coverage from the summer of 2001 about the scandal surrounding Chandra Levy and Rep. Gary Condit, a former Democratic representative from California, misstated a number of details about the matter. Ms. Levy was 24 at the time of her disappearance, not 23, Mr. Condit was a member of the Blue Dog Democrat Coalition, not the Yellow Dog Democrat Coalition, and Mr. Condit was never seen carrying her severed head into the congressional gym. We regret the error.

Due to a transcribing error, in an opinion piece published last Sunday, we misspelled the first name of President Bush's national security advisor, Dr. Condoleezza Rice. Additionally, the photograph that accompanied the story was actually that of Storm, the super-powered mutant played by Halle Berry in this summer's blockbuster film "X2," and not Dr. Rice. We regret the error.

Several cities that appeared as datelines in stories we reviewed were not actually visited by our reporters. These include, as far as can be ascertained, stories that were to have been written in Toledo, Ohio; Scranton, Pa.; Basra, Iraq; anywhere in Afghanistan; all of the continent of Asia; and essentially any place other than Washington and New York City. We regret both the errors and the failure to accrue frequent-flier miles.

In the third correction in this report we blamed the delay in our correction on an editing lapse, when in fact it was due to a combination of arrogance, sloth and alcoholism. We regret that, too, and hope we have not completely lost your trust.


Jake Tapper

Jake Tapper is the senior White House correspondent for ABC News.

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