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Thursday, March 2, 2017
AIM's Associated Press Fact-Check Fail
Topic: Accuracy in Media

Spencer Irvine wrote in a March 1 Accuracy in Media blog post:

Hindsight is 20/20, but the question looms large: Why did the Associated Press start fact-checking Donald Trump and his cabinet appointees (such as Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’s recent comment on historical black colleges and universities and school choice) and did not fact check Obama or any of his cabinet secretaries?

We checked the Associated Press’s website and only found Donald Trump and Sarah Palin-related fact checks. When we expanded our search, PolitiFact had a fact check history of Obama’s first Education Secretary Arne Duncan (which is comparable to the AP’s recent fact check of DeVos).

Sounds like the Associated Press is eight years too late, as far as fair and balanced fact checks are concerned.

Another question looms large: How does someone who purports to be a media analyst not know how the Associated Press works?

While the AP is a news organization, it is also a news cooperative that syndicates its content to other news organizations, in part in return for those organizations sharing their content with the AP for redistribution. As such, AP content is as likely, if not more so, to be found at other news operation as the AP itself.

If Irvine had bothered to broaden his horizons, he would have easily found that, yes, the AP has been fact-checking Obama for years -- and he would have found some of that at right-wing websites.

For instance, here's a Daily Caller article touting an AP fact-check of Obama's 2015 State of the Union speech. (The full fact-check can be found at the New York Post.) And here's an AP fact-check of Obama's 2013 State of the Union posted at The Blaze. And here is that 2013 fact-check at Fox News. And the right-wing Washington Times published the AP fact-check of Obama's 2012 and  2014 State of the Union speeches.

Well, so much for accuracy in media at AIM.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:29 PM EST

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