[W]e are officially retracting ‘A Rape on Campus.’ We are also committing ourselves to a series of recommendations about journalistic practices that are spelled out in the report. We would like to apologize to our readers and to all of those who were damaged by our story and the ensuing fallout, including members of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity and UVA administrators and students. Sexual assault is a serious problem on college campuses, and it is important that rape victims feel comfortable stepping forward. It saddens us to think that their willingness to do so might be diminished by our failings.
“Rolling Stone’s ‘shock narrative’ about sex assaults at the University of Virginia was rife with bad journalism, and the magazine has nobody but its own staff to blame, Columbia Journalism School Dean Steve Coll said Monday,” reports the Associated Press.
The NewsHour covered the findings of a police review that came to a similar conclusion two weeks ago.
“Rolling Stone magazine just plain got it wrong,” writes the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza.
That’s the conclusion of the massive (and massively long) piece penned by three officials at Columbia University journalism school, a report that details the fact that the story of a gang rape of a woman named “Jackie” at the University of Virginia was, in fact, simply not right.
So, that’s bad enough. What’s worse is that the errors made by Sabrina Rubin Erdely, the article’s author, and the rest of the Rolling Stone editorial chain were entirely avoidable and encompassed the sort of basic reporting that every student in journalism school should know.
Today’s Question: What do you think of Rolling Stone’s retraction of the bogus UVA rape story?