Sunday, June 9, 2002

BEIJING (AP) - It was a great story: U.S. Congress wants new building, threatens to leave Washington.

So one of Beijing's biggest tabloids published as news the fictional account from the Web site of the American satire newspaper The Onion — and got an embarrassing lesson in journalism.

The June 3 report by the Beijing Evening News quoted Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert calling the domed, 209-year-old U.S. Capitol "inappropriate for a world-class legislature." Others said Congress might move to Tennessee or North Carolina if it didn't get a new building.

The article was a deadpan spoof of the way sports teams threaten to leave cities in order to get new stadiums. The report in the Evening News, which didn't credit The Onion, included a graphic from the Web site showing a proposed new U.S. Capitol equipped with a retractable dome.

The Evening News acknowledged its mistake when contacted by foreign reporters, though it hasn't told its readers.

"We consider this a warning and will strengthen supervision of our reports," said Yu Bing, a manager of the Evening News' foreign news department.

Yu said his newspaper looks at "whether a report is hostile to the nation concerned or would hurt relations with that country.
"This report didn't contain such elements, so we decided to publish it," he said.

Surely the Onion has been taking seriously before. Is the irony lost on this one?



The Simpsons' Treehouse of Horror VIII


It wasn't long after 9/11, September 11, 2001, that I began this website. I felt compelled to connect with other people around the globe. I had recently heard about "weblogs" or "blogs" and I dove right into I searched for others to connect with online and I found Ageless. It led to meeting many great friends to discuss events of the day. From then on it snowballed. Most importantly we offered one another support and friendship across the globe; finding that we were just a few keystrokes away.


    Blue Ridge Mtns-click for larger view

  © Free Blogger Templates Columnus by 2008

Back to TOP