Make a Correction
English, Journalism, Mathematics, Science, Media Literacy
Errors are found after publication — often by readers. The Washington Post is “pledged to minimize the numbers of errors we make and to correct those that occur.” The Post checks disputed details and looks at the context to determine if and what correction is needed.
It is the practice of The Post to include reporters’ e-mail addresses at the end of articles. Readers may contact reporters, contact email@example.com, or add comments online.
When an error occurs, media is obligated to be transparent. The newspaper indicates the mistake they made and when they made it, and provides the correct information. Online, the corrections are indicated in a paragraph before the article. Give students “Make a Correction.” Discuss the kinds of corrections made in the examples.
Read today’s newspaper to find where corrections are indicated in print.
Read The Post. If you find an error, write a correction statement.
Terms related to errors, mistakes and deception are defined in In the Know. Review these terms with students. Many of the suggested activities in this guide relate to these concepts.
Get Acquainted with FREE for ALL
English, Journalism, Media Literacy, Personal Finance
The Washington Post publishes FREE for ALL on Saturday. This collection of concise and longer statements presents multiple perspectives on Post content. Readers send their comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Give students FREE for ALL. Discussion of the comments might include:
• Do selections provide enough information about the original Post article to understand the comments? To locate the original article?
• The Post provides the contributor’s name and city. Why do you think this information is given?
• For some, job and title are also provided. How is this helpful to readers?
• The works of reporters, columnists and editors receive comments. Which of the letter writers uses facts and history to support a viewpoint? Which use grammar and definitions to make a point? Which use mathematics and statistics?
Face Misinformation at The Intersect
Journalism, Media Ethics, Social Studies
Media may be guilty of publishing misinformation when reporters and editors are rushing to get information disseminated ahead of other media in a 24/7 news cycle. Early polls might support media bias such as in the case of the infamous Chicago Daily Tribune banner headline: “DEWEY DEFEATS TRUMAN.” A smiling President-elect Harry S. Truman, who was traveling to D.C. by train, was given a copy of the newspaper in St. Louis. He held up the erroneous headline and photographers documented the major mistake and provided a lesson for media.
Problems can also arise on the Internet when there is no protocol of verification of facts or reliability of sources. The Washington Post column, The Intersect, was created to inform readers “what was fake on the Internet this week.” Read and discuss the May 1 column.
Read and discuss current The Intersect columns.