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Friday, April 23, 2021

Vice President Pence’s Problem Was Worse Than Readers Realized

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These days, many things don’t need to be verified before being published. They can even be published, and then verified later.

Yesterday, The New York Times decided to publish an extensive report that Vice President Mike Pence had disparaged gay people before he was governor of Indiana. We did our best to verify the facts. The piece followed the same steps as almost all Times investigations. For instance, the story relied on anonymous sources, references to police reports and court documents, and other public records. We also watched carefully for pronouncements by Pence and his staff, but we didn’t find any.

Still, I’d say the story took guts for The Times to publish, especially given the “alternative facts” part of the president’s latest tweet.

And that’s not all the news.

On Monday, Fox News Channel is launching a platform to air investigative journalism. The story will cover complex global issues.

And for a temporary time, the Wall Street Journal has become the world’s first media organization to offer clients the ability to watch programming simulcast on a rival newspaper’s website, which may offer customers the same story.

These changes suggest that established media organizations have turned a corner, and they help illustrate why our recommendations are so important.

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