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Tuesday, June 8, 2010
WND Touts Bogus Crowd Numbers on Protest
Topic: WorldNetDaily

The headline of a June 7 WorldNetDaily article by Chelsea Schilling blares, "10,000 throng to stop Ground Zero mosque." But Schilling offers no evidence that this is a fact.

Schilling begins her article by claiming that "As many as 10,000 protesters from across the country" protested a mosquet to be built near the site of the World Trade Center in New York. She later repeated claims by anti-Muslim activist Robert Spencer that "Police estimated that 5,000 people were there, and other estimates ranged as high as 10,000." But as an anti-Muslim activist, Spencer has motivation to inflate numbers, and Schilling offers no evidence his numbers have any basis in fact, let alone from which bodily orifice Spencer is pulling his "other estimates" from.

Indeed, the truth appears to be much less grandiose. As Media Matters notes, New York newspapers placed crowd estimates as somewhere between 350 and 1,000.

This sort of bamboozlement is just one of many reasons that WND has to spend precious time and money trying to convince people it's telling the truth -- something considered axiomatic with real news outlets.

UPDATE: WND has changed the headline to put "10,000" in quote marks, as if that hides the fact that the number is completely unsubstantiated.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:42 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, June 8, 2010 10:53 PM EDT

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