News & Politics

File Under Oops: Some Major Media Flub the Obamacare Ruling; Twitter Goes Wild

A roundup of the best tweets about the erroneous reports from CNN, FoxNews, and more.

It’s all well and good to try to be first with breaking
news, but there are a few news organizations that today are likely
reviewing their procedures on reporting—as in, don’t go on the
air with a Supreme Court ruling until you understand what it
says. CNN, Fox News, and NPR all got it wrong in the first
moments after the ruling was read in court, each reporting that
the justices had essentially rejected the Affordable Care Act.
It took
Wolf Blitzer on CNN and
Bill Hemmer at FoxNews a few flustered minutes to make corrections—once they got their facts straight. A listener said NPR made “numerous”
on-air apologies.

President Obama, watching CNN at the White House, was among those who heard the erroneous report, according to
Jake Tapper of ABC News. “Senior
administration officials say the president was calm,” wrote Tapper on
his blog.

Hey, even though these kinds of media mistakes
shouldn’t happen, we know they can—and do—in an environment in which the
to be first can obscure the mandate to be accurate. When
Blitzer called on his CNN colleagues to take “a deep breath,” he
was speaking some common sense. But it is CNN that crows it
wants to be the network viewers come to when major news is breaking!

No surprise, the very public gaffes prompted heavy media schadenfreude and a Twitter frenzy. Herewith, a random sampling: