Accuracy in Media

The New York Times has a little more egg on its face after it admitted that its highly acclaimed podcast, Caliphate, failed to meet its “standards for accuracy” after a lengthy investigation into the claims made on the podcast.

Th claims were made by Abu Hazayfah, a Canadian of Pakistani origin, who said he was a member of the Islamic State.

In September, Huzayfah — whose real name is Shehroze Chaudhry — was arrested by Canadian police and charged with perpetrating a terrorist hoax. Canadian officials say they believe that Chaudhry completely fabricated his terrorist activities.

That led the Times to investigate Chaudhry’s claims, and they discovered a history of misrepresentations and no corroboration of the atrocities he claimed to have committed in”Caliphate.”

“As a result, The Times has concluded that the episodes of Caliphate that presented Mr. Chaudhry’s claims did not meet our standards for accuracy.”

This isn’t the first time the Times has been forced to admit a story they published was fabricated.  In 2003, Jayson Blair admitted that he plagiarized and fabricated a number of stories that resulted in the resignations of Executive Editor Howell Raines and Managing Editor Gerald Boyd.

In addition to the Times’ admission, the Pulitzer Prize Board rescinded its citation of the Caliphate podcast and an accompanying article as a 2019 Pulitzer Prize Finalist.

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