New York Times (NYT) corrects false Jeremy Peters article that defamed Sharyl Attkisson

This article was first published April 4, 2020. There was no public action announced against Peters or his editor, Carolyn Ryan, for the fabricated quotes and false information in the Peters article.

The following is an opinion and analysis.

It should concern everyone when The New York Times publishes shoddy journalism that violates its own policies and would likely not even meet the standards of a tabloid rag.

Two weeks ago, a New York Times article by Jeremy Peters falsely labelled me a “coronavirus doubter.”

In the relatively few sentences referring to me, Peters deceptively altered a quote, and included fabricated and false information and implications. He also violated New York Times policy by failing to contact me for comment prior to publication.

Now, the New York Times has removed contested material from the defamatory article about Sharyl Attkisson. Additionally, it has made three revisions in the article– including partially fixing a deceptively edited quote– and added a Correction:

Correction:April 1, 2020
An earlier version of this article referred imprecisely to statements made by Sharyl Attkisson.  Ms. Attkisson accurately reported the number and location of U.S. coronavirus deaths, as of the date of her March 13 podcast. Separately, a reference to advertisements for protective masks that appeared on Ms. Attkisson’s website has been removed.

When I first contacted The Times two week ago, New York Times editor Carolyn Ryan dismissed my complaints. Instead of responding to any of the specific false statements in the article, Ryan defended the article by saying that because I had reported on coronavirus deaths– in a way The Times acknowledges was perfectly accurate– readers could somehow be misled into believing they were not at much risk if they were not in a high risk group.

I pointed out to Ryan that The New York Times, CNN, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Governor Andrew Cuomo, CDC, the Surgeon General and nearly every media outlet reported identical information.

I asked how it was that The Times contends readers are magically “misled” when I report the same accurate facts about coronavirus as does The New York Times and others. She did not respond.

Wiser heads ultimately prevailed. Lawyers at The New York Times have now forced multiple corrections in the defamatory article. Even with the revisions, false implications remain… but the corrections are a step in the right direction.

Unfortunately, as we all know, few people see the corrections compared to the numbers who read the original article.

Peters and Ryan should be ashamed of themselves. Their unethical work tarnishes a publication and colleagues at The New York Times, including the many good, ethical reporters who work there. Some of them are as appalled as I am about this brand of “journalism.”

Thank you to those affiliated with The Times and other journalism organizations who helped me in sorting through this.

Read additional background below:

READ: Attkisson demands NYT retract false, libelous report
Order “Slanted: How the News Media Taught Us to Love Censorship and Hate Journalism” by Sharyl Attkisson today at Harper Collins, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books a Million, IndieBound, Bookshop!

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20 thoughts on “New York Times (NYT) corrects false Jeremy Peters article that defamed Sharyl Attkisson”

  1. Robert Urquhart

    Very glad to see you’ve made a little headway here, Sharyl. I enjoy reading your articles every day & watching Full Measure every week. You & your efforts are greatly appreciated. Thank-You.

  2. Who trusts the NYT nowadays? Certainly not me, and your story is just another nail in the coffin of the Times’ credibility.

  3. The only reputation the New York Times has is that of bias and ignorance. Peters and Ryan are just the latest examples of the worst. Keep hammering Sharyl.

  4. Denis McCormick

    This is not the first time either that this has happened. The media has become accustomed to spread false information, have the major networks cover it and then issue a correction online. Everyone who has experienced this should band together as a class and sue them collectively.
    When all is said and done, the media and the politicians in New York will have a lot to answer to. And the people who lost loved ones should see a direct tie between the rhetoric of these people and the destruction it has caused.

    1. ¡Cuán acertadas son tus palabras!
      Y así ocurre con otras publicaciones que dependen de la publicidad en otros países.

  5. Why anyone would ever trust the NYT for anything is beyond me. It’s worse than tabloids simply by pretending to be legit.

  6. Sharyl,
    I ran across this blog and I just always wanted to thank you and complement you on what a professional job that you do for our country every day in pursuing the truth and providing it to your audience in a respectful way. I just wish the network would give you one hour instead of the 30 minutes that you are allowed. I think the additional 30 minutes would allow you to provide more detailed information on the stories that you provide and would also allow you to provide more information on other topics that are important to the American people.
    Thank you again for what you do.
    Byron Doyle

  7. You’re a lying, anti science sociopath who has a history of making false claims and promoting anti vaccine conspiracy theories. The humored you so you’d go away, you irrelevant lunatic

    1. Sharyl Attkisson

      Glen, you aren’t making sense. While a variety of opinions are welcome, we frown on uncivil or unhinged rhetoric. Troll elsewhere.

  8. Matthew Marrone

    Keep in mind that the New York Times has degenerated to the point that it is a mere left wing advocacy journal, no different than say The Nation or Mother Jones. It shouldn’t be treated as an objective news reporting entity. Approach as such.

  9. As with Climate Change, COVID19 has become a political dogma where anyone who dares to question the media narrative is immediately labels as apostate and attacked by any means necessary. It’s a practice they’ve used often on President Trump. Notice how he states a protocol off label existing FDA approved drug might work and when two idiots in Arizona drank Koi Pond Cleaner, the screaming meemees in the press corps tried to blame it on Trump. Some governors even banned use of the drug in spite of general acceptance of the protocol abroad. That is oppositional defiance at it’s finest. It’s time to tell the kids to sit in the corner while adults get things done.

  10. I can’t imagine the newsroom editors I knew last century choosing a fancy “wallpaper” and profile photo while artfully describing themselves in terms usually employed in a matchmaker’s listing.

    P.S. Have put my pre-order in for Slanted on fishpond, having read your previous two books cover to cover.

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