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Wednesday, September 9, 2009
WND Demands Right to Rebuttal -- Which It Rarely Allows In Its Own Reporting
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily has been up in arms about reporting critical of WND -- for instance, a report on "The Rachel Maddow Show" -- because WND was not given an opportunity by them to rebut the claims. This showed up on WND's front page over the weekend:

Joseph Farah repeated it in his Sept. 9 column:

Meanwhile, my colleagues in the news media are having a field day with the story of those attacking WND. They interview all kinds of experts on the subject, but don't bother to ask me about it.

Watch Rachel Maddow at MSNBC for a classic example of this kind of "journalistic responsibility" in action.

Even when WND is the story, no one asks us to respond or debate.

At least Van Jones was given the opportunity to respond to charges that he promoted "conspiracy tales" – not WND, not me!

But not permitting targets to rebut charges appears to be WND's editorial policy.

For instance, a Sept. 8 WND article on Rifqa Bary -- the teenager who fled to a Christian pastor after claiming that her Muslim parents were planning tokill her for converting to Christianity -- is filled with quotes by supporters of Bary accusing her parents of abuse, such as anti-Muslim writers Pam Geller and Robert Spencdr, but no attempt is indicated that WND contacted Bary's parents or their attorney for their side of the story.

Another Sept. 8 article repeating various revisionist prophecy claims by WND author  Joel Richardson -- such as that thebiblical Antichrist is the Muslim Madhi -- are not rebutted by anyone with differing views.

Even the article that precipitated some of this new scrutiny of WND-- in which Jerome Corsi suggests that a plan to establish emergency centers for civilians on military bases is just like "concentration camps for political dissidents, such as occurred in Nazi Germany"-- no one is given an opportunity to rebut the smear. Indeed, as we noted, even though the sponsor of the bill that would establish those centers, Rep. Alcee Hastings, issued a press release several daysbefore the article's publication outlining his rationale for it, Corsi did not quote it and instead attempted to smear Hastings.

Why should anyone do for Farah and WND what they will not do for the people they reports on?

Posted by Terry K. at 11:10 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, September 9, 2009 11:18 AM EDT

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