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MSNBC Quotes Parody Site

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Chris Vallance | 22:17 UK time, Friday, 24 August 2007

SharptonMSNBC.jpgI forget how often I get asked by fellow journalists, "but can you really trust blogs?". It's a bit like asking if you can trust the middle classes - the only fair answer is, "depends which one". A good sign that a blog is less than trustworthy might be that it's a) called News Groper b) it quotes a famous civil-rights activists talking about dolphins attacking each other with spears

Unfortunately those clues eluded one journalist at MSNBC. Adam Varga of parody blog News Groper writes:

"Last night MSNBC.com quoted our fake Al Sharpton blog on News Groper as being a real source. [see screen grab] The Sharpton post was about the Michael Vick dog fighting ring story . A quote from the original article (which MSNBC since redacted once they realized we're a parody site):

But at the same time, Sharpton argued that the prosecution of Vick was overkill. "If the police caught Brett Favre (a white quarterback for the Green Bay Packers) running a dolphin-fighting ring out of his pool, where dolphins with spears attached to their foreheads fought each other, would they bust him? Of course not," Sharpton wrote Tuesday on his personal blog. "They would get his autograph, commend him on his tightly spiraled forward passes, then bet on one of his dolphins."

Kind of funny how this blog-o-sphere thing works."

Well, as that Ed Murrow of celluloid Kent Brockman once said it's, "funny when it happens to them." I'm sure more than one overworked and overstressed journalist will read this and think, there but for the grace of God go I. Sharpton's fake personal blog post was a News Groper entry titled , "Don’t let this guilty plea fool you, Vick is innocent (like OJ)" Yet even the most obvious hints that something isn't right sometimes go unnoticed - remember the US Congress and its retractable roof? And we've had our share of famous errors. MSNBC have, btw, issued a correction.


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