Wall of Shame

CNN, USA Today, and other media organizations got fooled

There's an old saying in journalism: If your mother says she loves you, check it out.

It's a facetious way of saying: Trust no one, verify everything.

Yet some of the biggest, most respected media outlets in the country failed to perform their due diligence when it came to the Schapiro study's ridiculous claims about a nationwide child trafficking epidemic.

In an era defined by fast-paced blogging and doing more with less, reporters have precious little time to document the information they're regurgitating. This leaves readers vulnerable to pseudoscience and quackery.

The following is an alphabetical list of news organizations that repeated the Schapiro study's erroneous claims:

CNN, Online sex ads complicate crackdowns on teen trafficking, September 14, 2010

Dallas Morning News, Sex trafficking of young girls could soar, January 20, 2011

Detroit Free Press, Sex sites on the web exploit nearly 160 Michigan girls monthly, experts say, January 26, 2011

Detroit Free Press, Advocates work for tougher laws, November 7, 2010

Fort Worth Examiner, Sex trafficking, Texas children bought and sold online, January 25, 2011

Grand Rapids Press, Human trafficking, exploitation on the rise in Michigan, September 6, 2010

Houston Chronicle, Faith groups tackle sex trade surrounding super bowl, February 2, 2011

Miami Herald, Girls trapped in modern-day slave trade, January 30, 2011

Minneapolis Star Tribune, Teen prostitutes get new status, February 26, 2011; Sexually exploited kids are victims, March 6, 2011

Minnesota Public Radio, Sex trafficking on the rise in Minnesota, March 8, 2011

MsMagazine.com, Jailing girls for men's crimes, December 8, 2010

Pegasus News, Dallas is hotspot for exploitation of adolescent girls, January 28, 2011

St. Paul Pioneer Press, Minnesota's child sex profile rising, September 8, 2010

USA Today, New efforts target child sex trafficking; more groups and activists band together, September 30, 2010

WFAA, Study counts sexually exploited girls in Texas, January 19, 2011

 
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13 comments
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Jamescrocker66
Jamescrocker66

The current state of the media in this country is reprehensible! They no longer corroborate what they report, just so long as whatever they report, boost their ratings. The talking heads that appear on air, are just readers of the "news" and not real journalists. The heads are put in front of the cameras, solely to look like they know what they are doing, and not restrained by the ethics that they should be held to! Most of the "news" is reported to gain market share to sell some product that we really do not require or need, and to boost their ratings to the public!

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PhilE
PhilE

So I guess this is supposed to be the real journalism? This is the worst article I've read today. You explain nothing about what you are saying simple cut and paste others headlines, call them lies and then do nothing to back that up. Although in reality I'm not sure you are saying they are wrong, or if you are saying anything at all. Is this just a piece you posted because you had to put something up? Or do you simply expect everyone who reads the shit you write to know exactly what you think you know? I think an old saying that caught on for you should've been take classes in journalism before you try and write. This is garbage.

Patricia
Patricia

PhilE, do you think "real journalism" consists of someone putting their thoughts and opinions on paper? it's about relaying facts, real and verifiable facts. the point of this article is that some news outlets do not check their facts before publishing and it lists those news outlets. what part of this do you not understand?

PhilE
PhilE

I don't understand the part of the article where they say these journalists don't check their facts or back up their claims, and then the New Times does exactly that. There are no facts here just someone saying somone else is wrong, and that is bad journalism.

PhilE
PhilE

The full article has nothing to do with this post, it is not referenced once at no point does it say "though I am doing no journalism here, I do in fact do it elsewhere" I am not saying that he is wrong that the main article if there is one is wrong. I am merelly stating that he is commenting on bad journalism in a piece that shows bad journalism. He makes claims with no backing, and if he backs them somewhere else than he makes no mention of it as to lead the person to understand of what he speaks. And in the end anyway isn't one child forced into sex slavery enough to be an epidemic?

J Curwen
J Curwen

Did you actually read the full article in addition to this related blog post?

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