Kathy Shaidle

Media Matters confused by difference between Twitter and television

Posted on October 16 2009 9:00 am
Kathy Shaidle blogs at FiveFeetOfFury, now entering its 11th year online. Her latest book is Acoustic Ladylandkathy shaidle, which Mark Steyn calls "a must-read."
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CNN's Rick Sanchez

Media Matters‘ Eric “the Excitable” Boehlert confuses sarcasm with wit and insight again this morning.

If you’ve been following the Rush Limbaugh/NFL saga, you know that CNN’s Rick “Leaving The Scene” Sanchez was one of the mainstream broadcasters who repeated a  “racist” quotation falsely attributed to the popular talk radio host.

Eventually, Sanchez apologized, but only “kinda sorta,” as described it. You see, Sanchez issued his glib, half-hearted “mea culpa,” not on the air, but on Twitter. HotAir is unimpressed — and Media Matters thinks that’s silly:

Hot Air claims Sanchez, when notified about the quotes, “kinda sorta apologiz[ed] — on Twitter.” Gee, that doesn’t sound fair. Sanchez aired the disputed quote on national television, then only “kinda sorta” apologized “on Twitter.” Liberal bias!

Now, Sanchez has around 113,000 Twitter “followers”, but even his 3 PM ET show on CNN must have more viewers than that. (Although at last count, FOX News has more viewers at three o’clock in the morning than CNN does in prime time.)

If the New York Times published its retractions inside, say, fortune cookies scattered throughout Lower East Side Chinese restaurants, would Media Matters find that an equally acceptable journalistic practice?

Media Matters isn’t finished though. Boehert counters that Sanchez did apologize on the air for attributing a toxic, unsourced quote to Limbaugh. Here’s Sanchez’s “apology,” as trumpeted by Media Matters:

Among the news organizations that reported that [quote] yesterday was our show at 3:00. Limbaugh’s response to this is — and I — we want to be fair to Rush — he says: “We have gone back. We have looked at everything else, and there is not even an inkling that any of the words in that quote are accurate. It’s outrageous.” So, Rush Limbaugh is denying that that quote has come from him.

Now maybe its my conservative “nuance” allergy but… I’m not feeling the “apology” there. Your mileage may vary.

What Media Matters is ignorning, so far, is the bigger story: where did those fake quote originate?

Mark Steyn and American Thinker have one fellow claiming he’s traced them to… a liberal New York law firm (which, according to its own website, “handles disputes and transactions for numerous sports-related entities”).

Now that’s an interesting story. So is the surprising connection Media Matters’ George Soros evidently had to the whole Limbaugh/Rams fiasco. I doubt any of this will get much play on CNN, though, or on Media Matters.

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