The Daily Mail journalist Richard Ashmore is certainly feeling a bit of a plonker after having one of his stories published.
He was probably browsing t’internet looking for something to write about and came across Steve Jobs’ twitter account. In it Steve Jobs admitted that the new iPhone 4 might have to be recalled due to problems. To Richard who was probably under a tight deadline from his editors had to come with a fantastic story which would grab peoples attention, the message seemed like mana from heaven. So without much thought, research, or even reading, Richard wrote down a story about Apple. It probably took him about 10 minutes from reading the tweet to having it in front of his editor.
If Richard had read a few more of Steve’s tweets he might have found more stories. Steve had also said “People who live in houses shouldn’t throw glass phones” and “The unshaven unemployed population is starting to line up at Apple stores. Ugh, go stand outside a FedEx sort facility”. A very quick read of a number of these tweets would have made it obvious to anyone with half a brain that the twitter account is a parody one. In fact it actually says so in the bio bit. Richard didn’t see this.
Or maybe he did realise it was a parody twitter account and like all good journalists he did his job and wrote a story which attracts readers to his newspaper whilst ignoring minor issues like the truth. The whole point being to get readers to your newspaper in the hope that they stay around and read some more.
Even if that is the case for Richard Ashmore he is still a plonker. If there is one thing journalists should have realised by now it is that techy people can be quite pedantic. So writing a technological story with hardly a grain of truth in it and expecting no one to notice shows either complete naivety or total stupidity. Possibly with Richard’s editors too. If he had written a fake story about some EU regulation he would have gotten away with it scot-free as no one checks such stories.