Monday, December 04, 2017

Brian Ross suspension from ABC underscores how important fact checking is now on network news

An indication that major media outlets are now implementing zero tolerance of missteps by their own high profile personalities comes with ABC News four-week suspension without pay of Brian Ross, 69, announced Saturday.

Ross reportedly announced that, according to an anonymous source, Trump had told Flynn to contact the Russians while still a candidate in 2016. Later it was learned that this contact happened after the election and appears to have been legitimate legally.  This seems to have been a simple oversight in the procedure of fact checking.

CNN Money has a provocative story here;  CNN reports it pressured ABC to come clean on the matter.

The New York Times has a story here.

ABC News offers its statement on Michael Flynn here.  For the record, here is ABC’s account of Flynn’s charge, with a PDF of the charging documents.  Flynn plead guilty on Friday December 1.

Trump tweeted pleasure at the suspension.   The stock market dropped suddenly (then recovered) and Trump claimed investors should sue ABC News.

Brian Ross is known for investigative journalism on series like ABC 20-20.  I would think he would be able to review a problem like electric power grid security (with respect to solar storms and now North Korea), as to the “facts” regarding utility and tech company preparedness.

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