CNN retracts names of suspects
September 13, 2001 9:25 PM   Subscribe

CNN retracts names of suspects it's far down on the pages, so i quote: "We would like to correct a report that appeared on CNN. Based on information from multiple law enforcement sources, CNN reported that Adnan Bukhari and Ameer Bukhari of Vero Beach Florida, were suspected to be two of the pilots who crashed planes into the World Trade Center. CNN later learned that Adnan Bukhari is still in Florida, where he was questioned by the FBI. We are sorry for the misinformation. A federal law enforcement source now tells CNN that Bukhari passed an FBI polygraph and is not considered a suspect. Through his attorney, Bukhari says that he is helping authorities. Ameer Bukhari died in a small plane crash last year."
posted by moth (12 comments total)
That's fucking terrible. What the hell is the use in printing names at this stage anyway?

posted by techgnollogic at 9:33 PM on September 13, 2001

Hello, massive lawsuit.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:35 PM on September 13, 2001

wow. nothing like a little accountability in the professional media. they need to remember that reporting news is not meant to be a race.
posted by mich9139 at 9:46 PM on September 13, 2001

...and Ameer died September 11, 2000 in a plane crash in Florida. The brothers' identification was stolen and used by two other men.
posted by droob at 9:48 PM on September 13, 2001

I was pleased to see that announcement. if you notice, you *rarely* see a retraction on the web. sites just change their information, and then you sit and scratch your head, poking around for a bit of information you're sure you saw earlier.

it's more responsible than usual.
posted by rebeccablood at 9:48 PM on September 13, 2001

kirk: Not if the information came from law enforcement, and CNN can prove it. Also, people thought the guy was dead, so it's not like people were going to ruin a dead person's career. (Being announced as dead can be bad for a live person's career, but he's not a big public figure anywhere, I don't think.) Then there's the situation, which any court would consider. Still may be a lawsuit, but it would be an iffy one. Sounds more like an out-of-court settlement, at best, unless CNN gets miffed by being sued or the guy decides against it.
posted by raysmj at 9:50 PM on September 13, 2001

usually, it's all very "1984" changing of information. one fact is printed a minute agao, then a conflicting fact ios printed later, with no explanation.

i know i would be a little peeved if my name appeared on a list like that due to a rushed news report.
posted by mich9139 at 9:52 PM on September 13, 2001

...and Ameer died September 11, 2000

posted by juv3nal at 9:56 PM on September 13, 2001

yes, at least CNN had the cojones to admit when they were wrong. (obligatory disclaimer: I'm a CNN employee, though I don't work at or do any writing for them, nor do I speak for them.)

But...what concerns me more are the headlines I've seen in LOTS of places (websites and several major newspapers) that talk about how the "hijackers were identified." Normally, it's a major pet peeve when the word "allegedly" is misused in journalistic copy, but shouldn't it really be there?

Something, say, along the lines of "The hijacker is allegedly so-and-so", or "So-and-so, the suspected hijacker"?

In a situation like this, everyone from journalists to politicians, needs to be MORE careful than normal. Yes, we're angry. But we don't need to accuse others of something that we're not TOTALLY sure that they did.
posted by Vidiot at 10:06 PM on September 13, 2001

you're 100% correct vidiot. a clear disclaimer is ideal. its seems like many news sources are a little hesitant to announce that their news could be inacurate in a time like this, and it is good to see a major news reporter admit that they were incorrect.
posted by mich9139 at 10:19 PM on September 13, 2001

This is what happens when the news media has 2 hours of hard facts on for 24 hours.
posted by eyeballkid at 12:38 AM on September 14, 2001

Another pet peeve (and now I swear I'll shut up with 'em):

"The news media" or "the media" are not a homogeneous, monolithic force. "The media" includes NPR, CBS, The Nation, The New York Times, MeFi, The Weekly Standard, The New York Post, Reader's Digest, Howard Stern, Art Bell, Rush Limbaugh, CNN, G. Gordon Liddy, the Paris Review, and Roger Ebert (just to name but a few examples from the US.) I doubt that *all* of these share opinions and ways of looking at the world.

"Media", like "data", is a plural noun. I think it's fallacious to attribute a particular point of view to them.

Okay, rant over. (And to disclaim again, I work for a big news organization, so I do have a vested interest in this kind of thing.)
posted by Vidiot at 4:03 AM on September 14, 2001 [1 favorite]

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