Monday, February 16, 2009

NBA to Players: No Gangsta-style Tats (SIKE!)

A PHOENIX ALTERNATIVE NEWSPAPER ran a cover story last week about the NBA's proposed new rule to limit the number of tattoos NBA players can sport.

They quoted NBA commissioner David Stern: "We feel it is important that our players not scare the bejesus out of affluent demographic groups with gangsta-style tattoos."

They clarified with this: The proposed cap, as strange as it sounds, would require teams to limit their roster as a whole to 61 percent tattoo coverage of the "upper arms and necks." So if a team has a couple of players covered in tats, conceivably two or three players with flesh as pure as a baby's butt would be needed to offset.

Fascinating stuff, eh?

Yeah, except it was all a hoax.

The Phoenix paper picked up on the story after it ran on who pulled the story from a satirical blogger.

Should the Phoenix paper be punished in any way for running a story based on false information? Should they be reprimanded for their poor journalism?

Or is this just the way things are in the age of the Internet?


Anonymous said...

I don't necessarily think the Phoenix paper should get in trouble for running the story, but I do think that what they did is subject to being frowned upon. Most likely they'll lose a chunk of their credibility status from other journalists and their readers.

Alexandra Strockyj

nicholasderoose said...

No excuse! A newspaper is built on trust and it should have check the facts before running the story.

Anonymous said...

I think that the newspaper should have done more research. Even if the NBA was considering this rule, which I think they would never do, the paper has the obligation to get the whole story. Especially if they are going to make it their front page story.

Anthony Brown

Anonymous said...

I don't think there's anything anyone can do to punish them. I think their punishment will be pure embarassment as well as a loss in credibility. The idea of being a journalist is to research, gather and present the facts. Even basic research is absent from this story and it's the exact opposite of fact. It's just a shame that they have now added to the already low trust in media.

Lara Taylor Strayer

Alexander Narita said...

phoenix alternative newspaper should be punished for the fact that they didn't look in to the story to see if the facts are true, this damages the credibility of journalism, it hurts the principle that journalist are out there to report the truth, the facts.

Anonymous said...

I think the newspaper should have done research about a story like that before it got published. And personally I think that the so-call "gansta-style" tatted basketball players is offensive to say since "basketball players" arent the only ones who walk around with a bunch of tattoos.

Anonymous said...

How did they manage to write a cover article with this piece of information, when the only source they had was taken from the Fox Sports website? Newspapers make errors all the time, but I think this is different--the story wasn't verified. So they hire a graphic designer to make a cover for them of a basketball player with tattoos, and a reporter to research about neolithic and egyptian tattoo practices, and describe for us every single one Shaquille Oneill's tattoos, but they didn't even verify the story.
They didn't really even need to call to verify, because no NBA commissioner would ever say what he is quoted here as saying. It looks like it came straight from the Onion. The writer here doesn't even mention how controversial the statement is about scaring "affluent fans." And they haven't even taken down the article, it's still up on front page of the website.
Aside from that, this article was poorly written and it runs on for six pages, which is ridiculous, given the subject matter and amount of space given to tell us about specific tattoos.

Peter Hayakawa

Mike Revak said...

I see no reason why the newspaper could not have done extensive fact checking to guarantee the legitimacy of the story. It seems like they were just being lazy.

Stephanie Klock said...

The only thing necessary is an apology from them to their readers. This is the internet age you do not know what is real or what is fake. Don't be lazy make sure what you are printing is accurate. I heard this rumor around about 3 years ago. Hopefully now everyone knows it is all a hoax. I think it is absurb to begin with to limit the ammount of tattoos for the reasons mentioned. Good lord, viewers open your eyes to the real world. Say hello, not everyone is like you! Does that scare you?

Brittney Corridean said...

Yeah it's a shame that they didn't check the facts before publishing. News travels fast today, and something like that could get out quick. When people hear where it came from and why it said they could lose trust in that paper.