Don’t worry son, you haven’t been in the Crikey editor’s chair if you
haven’t been done like a dinner by some scheming hoaxer. It gets worse
when your error then sees you towelled in the mainstream media. This
one appeared in DD McNicoll’s Strewth column on 17 October 17 2001:

Clangers, by crikey
The peril of believing
that emails contain nothing but honest information is about to be sheeted home
to Melbourne internet editor Stephen Mayne, who runs the crikey.com.au
website. Last week Mayne put up a list that he headed: “Nepotism or dynasties,’
which purported to list various generations of families who worked in the news
media. Mayne offered free Crikey subscriptions to anyone
emailing him three further examples. Yesterday morning the list had expanded to
135 or so examples – but, unfortunately for Mayne and his site’s credibility,
many were total fabrications and others incorrect. Mayne clearly posted emailed
offerings with no effort to check even such howlers as a claim that a newcomer
on The Sydney Morning Herald is the son of legendary Washington Post hack Bob
Woodward or that a reporter from The Australian is the second cousin of Irish
media mogul Tony O’Reilly. It will make readers doubt the accuracy of all
information on the site.

Ouch, that’s gotta hurt!

Peter Fray

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