Neanderthal Clone Baby Story Disappears on UK Metro, Unpublishing suspected

iMediaEthics publishes international media ethics news stories and investigations into journalism ethics lapses.


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A screenshot of the now-unpublished Metro article with the fake quotes highlighted. (Credit: Metro, screenshot, highlight added)

The UK Metro has unpublished a Jan. 21 article containing a fake quote about the possibility of a Neanderthal clone baby.

As iMediaEthics has written, many media outlets misquoted Harvard genetic professor George Church after he was interviewed by Der Spiegel in January. Fake quotes attributed to Church included:

“I can create a Neanderthal baby, if I can find a willing woman.”

“I have already managed to attract enough DNA from fossil bones”.

The UK Metro’s article, “Scientist seems female surrogate in order to make a Neanderthal baby,” was on iMediaEthics’ recently published list of media outlets that  have still failed to remove the fake quotes and run corrections.

iMediaEthics wrote to Metro seeking a correction but never received a response. However, when we went to the Metro‘s website this week, the article had mysteriously vanished. In place of the article is an error page reading in part, “Sorry! We couldn’t find your page.”

A search of the Metro‘s website for “George Church” produces the headline and brief descrption, but when you click on it, it also goes to the error page. See below.


iMediaEthics searched the Metro’s website for “George Church” but the site has apparently deleted its story. (Credit: Metro, screenshot, highlight added)

iMediaEthics has again written to Metro seeking a transparent correction.

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Neanderthal Clone Baby Story Disappears on UK Metro, Unpublishing suspected

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