Under the Hat: Trusting Sources - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather and Events

Under the Hat: Trusting Sources

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Call this one a cautionary tale in trusting sources or how haste makes waste, or you can just insert your favorite cliché here.

Anyway, there once was a CEO of a professional basketball team.

His name was Bob Vander Weide and the team was the Orlando Magic.

Bob was asked by ownership to resign after reports surfaced that he was drunk when he called a star player in the middle of the night.

At his resignation press conference Bob ran into an aggressive young television reporter named Daralene Jones.

She came to the press conference prepared, armed with a transcript of the phone conversation Bob was said to have had with star center Dwight Howard.

Howard is in free agency which means he can sign with another team or re-up with the Magic.

That makes this a delicate time in their contract talks.

But Jones, her voice full of the fans' righteous indignation, asked Bob how he could say things like how terrible a place Orlando is and how terrible the team would be without their star.

Bob shook his head, his shoulders drooped a touch and he simply said he had only a few glasses of wine and that he didn't discuss private conversations with players.

Seemed like a TV "gotcha" moment until about an hour later when a blogger posted an article called "Orlando Reporter asks Resigning Magic CEO if He Said that Thing I Made Up."

Yup, the transcript was a fake, meant as a parody of what a drunk dialing conversation between the two might sound like, complete with a few "I love you man's" thrown in.

  As much fun as embarrassing a powerful sports executive and proving a member of the media incompetent might be, there is a serious message here.

We live in the Age of Instant Information, much of it coming from the vast murkiness of cyberspace.

The media has an obligation to double check sources.

But you, as a consumer of that information have an obligation too, to know that the information you're getting is coming from a reliable source.

Or, as one more cliché puts it: Don't trust everything you read.

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