Alessandra Stanley Goes from Times Star to Goat

Alessandra Stanley was once the ít girl of journalism. So cool and so facile, able to mix in anecdotes about Neapolitan traditions, esoteric literary references, and other word tricks.

But she is on a copy desk now, no longer the top TV writer for the NY Times.
It’s all because of one story with seven blunders in it. The correction was a record, and the Times admitted they’d had a special editor read through everything she wrote…yet it still came out wrong. Here’s what the Times had to say in the way of explanation:

But a more nuanced answer is that even a newspaper like The Times, with layers of editing to ensure accuracy, can go off the rails when communication is poor, individuals do not bear down hard enough, and they make assumptions about what others have done. Five editors read the article at different times, but none subjected it to rigorous fact-checking, even after catching two other errors in it. And three editors combined to cause one of the errors themselves.

Part of what’s making people like a blogger called Still a Newspaperman so mad is that it was error filled and it was about beloved Walter Cronkite. Because he was a news guy, who had to get it right, the preposterous string of bang, 7 mistakes, sears at the skin. Gawker also weighed in on Stanley, taking shots at one of their favorite targets.