Aug 18, 2009

remember when every family's first stop was online?

So you know that piece in the New York Times earlier this month that claimed that more and more families are waking up and immediately jumping online? The one that posited that...

After six to eight hours of network deprivation — also known as sleep — people are increasingly waking up and lunging for cellphones and laptops, sometimes even before swinging their legs to the floor and tending to more biologically urgent activities.

Um, not so much. The NYTPicker (subscribed!) called out Brad Stone for using a shallow set of well-connected sources, and now Clark Hoyt, the Times' own public editor is taking Stone to task.

The Gudes’ story was fascinating, but the reporter, Brad Stone, did not find them by chance. Stone and Karl Gude used to work together at Newsweek, though both said they had not talked in 10 years. Then there was a source identified only as “Gabrielle Glaser of Montclair, N.J.” She is a freelance writer who has been published 54 times in The Times and is married to Stephen Engelberg, a former Times reporter and editor.

Three other sources were all media-savvy veterans. Naomi Baron, a professor at American University, has been quoted seven times in other Times articles and has written once for the Op-Ed page. James Steyer has been quoted 13 times and is the co-founder of Common Sense Media, a nonprofit that deals with children and entertainment issues. Liz Perle, identified only as “a mother in San Francisco,” is the other co-founder of Common Sense Media and is its editor in chief.

Something tells me Mr. Hoyt isn't the most popular guy around the newsroom.