Politifact and Me

If you are wondering where the fact-checking comes in for all of that, you’re going to keep wondering. Politifact doubly embarrassed itself on the issue, first with the risibly sloppy and shockingly (if you don’t know very many reporters) lazy reporting habits of Louis Jacobson, who wrote that neither Jonah nor I had “returned inquiries,” by which he means to say responded to them. He tried to contact Jonah by sending a single email to a rarely used public account, and me he tried to contact—if you can call it that—by tweeting that he was fact-checking something. I do not follow him on Twitter, having been contentedly unaware of his existence, and I do not follow Politifact, for that matter. I am not sure that what Jacobson did constituted an “inquiry” at all, but I am sure that it does not constitute “inquiries.” When I pointed this out—and noted that National Review is in the telephone directory and has been since the Eisenhower administration, that we employ an energetic young man to answer the telephones, that my email address is obtainable from the web site, that National Review retains the services of various publicists and whatnot for the purpose of connecting its writers with media figures, etc.—“pick up the goddamned telephone,” in short—Jacobson responded in an odd way: by sending the same email again to Jonah the next morning, long after the piece had been published. His editor, the feckless, gormless, and in any intelligent world unemployable Angie Holan, noting the general mockery and merriment that my complaints about Politifact’s practices produced on Twitter and elsewhere, very quickly found a way to get in touch with me—turns out that it’s not that hard!—and asked for a telephone conversation, which I declined, having nothing to say to the intellectually dishonest, the cretinous, or the servile, except in those cases in which I am matched with such on cable-news panels. (Hello, Sally.)

via Politifact and Me.

I believe the correct response to that is “ouch.”

Seriously, a blogger would do a better job of trying to contact the author of an article.


2 thoughts on “Politifact and Me”

    1. Good heavens, I went to peek to see if I was being unfair– the guy I quote above has an incredibly busy twitter feed, while the one he’s eviscerating seems to use it as an auto-publish forum, mostly.

      That’s what I do, so it’s not like that’s an inherent bad, but… one should never try to contact somebody via a method when one is unclear on how it works. Heck, even I know that if you MUST send a twitter message to a busy account, you don’t just go “Hey @whatever, XYZ!”, you send them a MESSAGE.

      Me, I get updates when someone mentions me on twitter, because it hardly ever happens. For @KevinNR, I had to page down three times to get to posts that were more than an hour ago.

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