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[personal profile] eclectic_boy
Sometimes reading the same story from different sources just makes my head hurt. These can't all be true, but how to tell which? The worst part is how brazenly one or more of these sources is lying, simply stating (theoretically) easily verifiable things and just assuming no one will call them on it. So who should I be calling?

From NBC News, 10/17, 2:10pm:
Jeremy Epstein, First Questioner in Debate, Says He's No Longer Undecided
Asked Wednesday whether he was still undecided, Epstein said he was not.
"No, I think I made a decision," he said.
Epstein, who is studying exercise science, declined to reveal which candidate will be getting his vote.
But he told NBC 4 New York that before the debate, he was "swaying a little bit, I guess, towards the incumbent."

From ABC News, 10/17, 7:30pm:
But Epstein isn't expecting to be part of a potential Romney administration. He still considers himself undecided but leans toward one candidate.
"Well, if the election was today, I probably would vote for the president, so I don't know if you would call me undecided," he said. "But it would be a good label to put me under."

From Long island Newsday, 10/17, 9:59pm:
Nonetheless, Epstein said, he remains firmly undecided.
"Mitt Romney's interruptions were more outbursts and the president's were more subtle," Epstein said. "The president was more funny about it and Mitt Romney was a little intense about it."

Date: 2012-10-18 02:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I realize that this is a minor matter, but it triggered a reaction in me since it reinforces how easily it is for a news source to just print what they want people to believe.
And I also realize that since the issue at hand is what one person believes, they might have said different things to different reporters. But I have a harder time believing that.

Date: 2012-10-18 09:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I don't mean any offense to any journalists about, but my experience is that every situation in which I was personally involved and had personal knowledge of the facts, and a news story was written, I have always found one or two factual mistakes in the news story. It may just really be difficult to get down all of the facts in a way that you can recall later, and journalists may just be in too much of a hurry. Hard to say.

In this particular case, the actual quotes seem to indicate that he isn't undecided, so I think the descriptive text that suggests that he is (more or less) is just wrong. Or was written before the quotes were collected -- it's not uncommon these days for stories to get posted online, and then revised online. I've seen cases before in which the new material added during the revision contradicts some of the existing material -- just a sloppy editing job.

Date: 2012-10-19 03:32 am (UTC)
ext_14081: Part of a image half-designed as a bookplate. Colored pencil and ink, dragon reading (close-up on face) (books)
From: [identity profile]
It seems possible that Epstein said different things—and thought different things—at different times. Whether that's due to his on reflection, influence on his thinking/feeling from external factors, or tweaks due to the interaction with a given reporter, I couldn't say.

It also seems possible that one of more of the reporters could represent Epstein's thoughts incorrectly.

Which of these is more probable? (They could both be occurring of course).

Seems more useful to verify/falsify numbers claims. Or turn the discussion away from the undecidedness of one or more voters (yes they are, and the admasters are workign hard to change that) and more to the likely consequences of electing one or the other (which is more relevant).

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