Should reporters point out lies?

The New York Times’ ombudsman, Arthur Brisbane, asks an interesting question today that many people will consider a slam dunk, and others will consider: Should reporters point out when someone is lying?


As an Op-Ed columnist, Mr. Krugman clearly has the freedom to call out what he thinks is a lie. My question for readers is: should news reporters do the same?

If so, then perhaps the next time Mr. Romney says the president has a habit of apologizing for his country, the reporter should insert a paragraph saying, more or less:

“The president has never used the word ‘apologize’ in a speech about U.S. policy or history. Any assertion that he has apologized for U.S. actions rests on a misleading interpretation of the president’s words.”

Or should reporters simply write what they’re told? If this question sounds familiar, you’re probably a regular NewsCut reader.