Blink and you’re beat

Brian Cubbison who edits the “News Tracker” blog at greatly expanded on my observation Friday afternoon that Wikipedia beat AP to even a one line alert in the death of Tim Russert on Friday.

He’s got the full chronology of Wikipedia’s edits and what moved on the AP wire. Great stuff.

Another person Twittered me that the real story is “How did NBC get scooped.” And it does seem Russert’s employer was very slow out the gate with the news that happened in one of its own facilities.

A couple others weighed in on Wikipedia beating the AP on Russert story that I noticed:

Greensboro News & Record Editor John Robinson wrote  Wikipedia-1, AP-0.

Kurt Greenbaum in St. Louis wrote Insta-obit on the site we love to hate: Wikipedia.

I understand checks and being accurate as well as fast, but blink and you’re beat.

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  1. NBC simply tried to contact Russert’s wife and son in Italy to be sure they knew the news before airing it themselves, thus the delay.
    If NBC was “scooped” it was merely out of respect for the Russert family.

  2. Someone had to tell Big Russ as well.
    All the big news outlets showed a bit of old fashioned restraint here and good for them for once.

  3. In fact one of the NBC commentators when announcing it stated they had waited UNTIL his family was notified by them personally UNLIKE SOME OTHER NETWORKS.

  4. Let’s not encourage the “faster is bettter” mentality in media any more than it naturally has to deal with. I’m tired of getting the “news” quickly; I want it accurate.

  5. Give NBC credit please for not rushing to the front page to declare “our man is dead.” They have a lot more to worry about on both a moral and legal front, the moral being more important but the legal not to be dismissed. They also had just plain human reactions to contend with, with people who actually work in the Washington bureau being the ones who would have to put the story out while feeling numb, scared, or desolate and wanting to make sure they did right by their old Skipper.

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