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Oops: Deadspin makes the kind of mistake that they mock others for doing

Deadspin, which thrives on pointing out the blunders of others, found itself on the other side Saturday.

Sean Newell originally did a post on an interview Lou Piniella gave to a Portland radio station. He writes:

Lou Piniella sounds like a man fed up with every goddamned thing in this train-wreck interview with 750 The Game in Portland on Friday. In between talking about a charity event he is participating in and how he doesn’t much like working with the kids involved, he makes a pretty bold claim about Alex Rodriguez using a “skin cream” while the two were in Seattle. He also blames his wife for leaving him alone with the kids, yells at the kids to “shut up,” and generally sounds like a man at the end of his rope in this rambling 20-minute interview.

Sounds like ol’ Lou has lost it, right? And you’d think the A-Rod comments would make major news.

Naturally, Deadspin tweeted out the post (above). However, it didn’t take long for other tweeters to inform Deadspin that there was a problem.

It wasn’t the real Lou Piniella doing the interview. It was an impersonator doing a bit on the radio show.

So at the top of the post, Newell had to add this line:

Update: This is not Lou Piniella, it’s a dumb radio bit. My mistake.

The thing is, Deadspin still has the post on the site. It changed the headline to “Fake Lou Piniella.” But why keep up the post?

Newell had this exchange in the comments section.

Now far be it for me to teach journalism to the guys who know it all, but if you make a error like that, what is the point in keeping up the post? The better way to go would be to take down the post and do a new post acknowledging the error. The revised post is confusing.

OK, mistakes happen. Regardless of what occurred here, you can be sure Deadspin will be waiting to swoop in the next time someone goofs up.

3 thoughts on “Oops: Deadspin makes the kind of mistake that they mock others for doing

  1. I think Deadspin did the right thing here. If they deleted the post everything would accuse them of trying to cover up their mistake. Here, it’s right out in the open–no one will see the Lou Pinella article without realizing it was a hoax.

    This is the up-front way to do it. Admit you screwed up instead of trying to bury it.

    (Alternate headline for this post: “Ed Sherman revels in pointing out a goof while he criticizes Deadspin for doing the same thing.”)

  2. It’s journalistically best to acknowledge your mistakes in the same place you make them. And especially in new media, to pretend you never wrote something problematic is worse. Best to leave it up and prominently state your mea culpa.

    And I teach at one of the top j-schools in the country, so take that for what it’s worth.

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