An image of the Philadelphia Daily News‘ front page that was emailed to other media outlets clearly shows that the newspaper wrongly reported Nelson Mandela had died.
The emailed page appears to be from Tuesday’s edition of the Philadelphia Daily News. A black banner appears along the top of the page with white lettering that reads: “NELSON MANDELA DEAD AT 94.”
But while that image was prepared by the newspaper, it wasn’t the version of the front page that made it to print, the Philadelphia Daily News’ managing editor Pat McLoone told iMediaEthics by email. It was an “unauthorized front page” that the newspaper had sent to “some media outlets.”
The Epoch Times reported earlier today regarding the Mandela error, noting “It’s also not clear if the Daily News actually distributed the paper with the erroneous front page, the corrected one, or both.”
The Orange County Register‘s “Focus” page editor Charles Apple posted a photo of the Daily News error on his blog Wednesday morning.
But, Mandela is still alive, as Apple pointed out.
iMediaEthics reached out to the Philadelphia Daily News asking for confirmation that the image was real and for more information. In a statement from McLoone e-mailed to iMediaEthics and Charles Apple, the Daily News explained the photo was distributed to “some media outlets to showcase our front and back pages” but wasn’t part of the real print issue. The statement reads:
“The Daily News each night sends an e-mail to some media outlets to showcase our front and back pages. An e-mail for Tuesday, sent in error, had a copy of a front page that was not authorized to be released or printed. This unauthorized front page was not printed and did not appear on our websites. We alerted the outlets once we realized the mistake. The Daily News regrets the error.”
In an update, Apple asked for readers to send a copy of the real front page if they have it to verify. The Epoch Times seems to have the answer as it pointed to a screenshot detail of a version of the front page uploaded by the Daily News to its website (posted below). The Philadelphia Daily News‘ McLoone confirmed that the below is “what ran in all editions.”
iMediaEthics wrote earlier this month about media fails in reporting on Mandela. And last month, Germany’s Deutsche-Welle wrongly posted an obituary for Mandela.
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