Subject: media inquiry From: Peter Heimlich <> Date: 8/28/2013 2:02 PM To: "Holt, Margaret C." <mcholt@tribune.

com> CC:,,,,,,,,, Margaret Holt Standards Editor Chicago Tribune Dear Ms. Holt, I'd appreciate your responses to a couple quick questions for a follow-up I'm reporting re: this item I blogged on Monday, Actor David Hasselhoff says claims published in three Chicago Tribune articles are lies, but the paper refuses to publish a correction : Per my item, you'll recall that in an August 15 e-mail (see below my signature), you refused to publish the correction. According to Focus on accuracy, an article from the "Editing the Future" conference held Nov. 20-22, 2003 at Vanderbilt University, organized by Dr. Deborah Gump: "Quality is an on going journey. It's never done," said Margaret Holt, customer service editor of the Chicago Tribune. "Just when you think you've got something fixed, it ain't. It requires vigilance, and everybody internally needs to know that it matters." ...(Holt) found that 50 percent of errors happen at the "front end of the process," which is newsgathering. ..."What we want is a place where people feel free to talk about mistakes and that we can be candid about them and really be almost clinical on behalf of the reader so that we can learn from them and do better work." And don't forget to correct archived stories because there is no "statute of limitations" on errors. A mistake in a previous story is likely to show up again unless it's corrected. Here's a video from the conference featuring you called How the Tribune tackles errors: As I've informed you, Mr. Hasselhoff has unequivocally stated that claims reported about him in these three articles posted on the Tribune's website are false: Surf's Up For Cpr Crusade As `Baywatch' Star Signs On by Christi Parsons, Chicago Tribune, December 30, 1993: Mother On A Mission -- First Aid Might Have Saved Her Daughter, Now, Carol Spizzirri Is A Relentless Crusader by Julie Dearforff, Chicago Tribune, January 16, 1995: Save-A-Life Foundation in limbo -- Charity dogged by critics, economy is 'in hibernation' by Lisa Black, Chicago Tribune, October 11, 2009: I've twice e-mailed Ms. Parsons, Ms. Deardorff, and Ms. Black. None have provided any indication that the information they reported about Mr. Hasselhoff came from him or from his representative. Further, per Where Did the Save-A-Life Money Go? by Don Bauder, San Diego Reader, Nov. 17, 2010* and numerous other broadcast and print reports,** if any of the three obtained the information from the Save-A-Life Foundation or its founder/president, the credibility of both sources has been thoroughly discredited. It seems to me that if none of the three reporters is willing to verify that they obtained the information from Mr. Hasselfhoff or his representative, this would seem to be a textbook example of the above sentences which I emphasized. 1) Given these facts, would you explain why you refused to publish a correction? 2) Via How news organizations are preparing to handle corrections today by Andrew Beaujon, Poynter Institute, November 6, 2012, this quote is attributed to you: In our guidelines, we say: If the error is straightforward, we want to fix it fast online. Would you please provide me with a copy of those guidelines? Please feel free to provide any other relevant comments. Thanks for your continued attention and I look forward to your reply, preferably by end of the day Tuesday, September 3. If you need more time, please advise and I'll do my best to accommodate your schedule. Peter M. Heimlich Atlanta ph: (208)474-7283 website: blog:

* Mr. Bauder's article also discusses Ms. Deardorff's January 16, 1995 article and the resulting extensive February 7, 1995 published correction: ** cc: David Hasselhoff % Judy Katz, Judy Katz PR: Deborah Gump PhD Andrew Beaujon, Craig Silverman/Poynter Institute Don Bauder Christi Parsons, Julie Deardorff, Lisa Black, Jane Hirt

On 8/15/2013 1:43 PM, Holt, Margaret C. wrote: Mr. Heimlich: On behalf of Jane Hirt, I’m following up on your email on which she was copied. We have reviewed the email and do not plan a correction on the original article(s). Sincerely, Margaret Holt Standards Editor

Begin forwarded message:
From: Peter Heimlich <> Date: August 15, 2013, 12:08:13 PM CDT To: "Krause,Lauren" <> Cc: Shia Kapos <>, "Deardorff, Julie D." <>, <>, "Black, Lisa" <>, "Hirt, Jane" <> Subject: Re: Tribune articles Lauren, >It appears the information was correct at the time the article was written. I don't know what you mean. Based on the recent statement I obtained from David Hasselhoff's representative, he was never affiliated with the Save-A-Life Foundation (SALF), hence my corrections request which -- per the e-mails below my signature -- you invited me to submit: Therefore, unless one or all of the staff reporters who reported the claim in three Tribune articles from 1993-2009* -- Christi Parsons, Julie Deardorff, and Lisa Black -- will confirm that they verified the claim with Mr. Hasselhoff or his representative, that means they reported (and perhaps re-reported) an unverified, false claim provided to them by a third party. In order to provide those reporters an opportunity to respond, I'm copying them on this and I look forward to receiving their responses. Finally, in the interests of editorial oversight, I'm also copying Jane Hirt. Peter M. Heimlich Atlanta ph: (208)474-7283 website: blog: * cc: Jane Hirt, Shia Kapos

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful