A CNN report, based on anonymous sources, said that Donald Trump and his son, Donald Trump Jr., received an e-mail Sept. 4, 2016, with information about hacked WikiLeaks documents.
But the sources for CNN’s story were wrong; the e-mail was actually sent on Sept. 14, when the WikiLeaks encryption key was public. Now CNN has corrected its story, noting in the text of its article that since the e-mail was Sept. 14, not Sept. 4, “the communication is less significant than CNN initially reported.”
CNN has since posted this correction. The error was corrected after about 8 hours.
“Correction: This story has been corrected to say the date of the email was September 14, 2016, not September 4, 2016. The story also changed the headline and removed a tweet from Donald Trump Jr., who posted a message about WikiLeaks on September 4, 2016.”
CNN’s PR team also tweeted a correction about the Trump, WikiLeaks error explaining, “CNN’s initial reporting of the date on an email sent to members of the Trump campaign about Wikileaks documents, which was confirmed by two sources to CNN, was incorrect. We have updated our story to include the correct date, and present the proper context for the timing of email.”
On Twitter, CNN senior media correspondent Brian Stelter reported that CNN won’t discipline the reporter Manu Raju who published the story because he “followed the editorial standards process” and “multiple sources provided him with incorrect info.”
CORRECTION: Email to Trump and Trump Jr. from individual offering Wikileaks documents came Sept. 14 — not Sept. 4 — as we reported earlier. Email pointed to docs Trump camp could get publicly. https://t.co/4FOdCebgQL
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) December 8, 2017
A CNN spokeswoman says there will not be disciplinary action in this case because, unlike with Brian Ross/ABC, @MKRaju followed the editorial standards process. Multiple sources provided him with incorrect info.
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) December 8, 2017
CNN's initial reporting of the date on an email sent to members of the Trump campaign about Wikileaks documents, which was confirmed by two sources to CNN, was incorrect. We have updated our story to include the correct date, and present the proper context for the timing of email
— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) December 8, 2017