MediaBugs wrote about former Outside magazine editor Hal Espen’s attempts to get the New York Times to correct an error in Thomas Friedman’s 2009 column. The error: Friedman incorrectly stated that “first President Bush had signed the Rio Treaty in 1993.” The correct information is that President Clinton signed the treaty.
Friedman admitted to MediaBugs that “he agrees the column should be corrected.” But, the Times reportedly won’t issue a correction, according to Media Bugs.
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MediaBugs noted that the two editors MediaBugs consulted “declined to be quoted publicly about the situation.” The Times’ communications director Danielle Rhoades Ha told MediaBugs that “For practical reasons, the New York Times opinion pages does not correct minor errors that are more than a year old.” Friedman also confirmed the existence of that “rule.”
MediaBugs debated if the issue is “minor,” noting that with the correct information in the column, “Friedman’s argument…is significantly weakened.”