Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Anonymous sources revisited: progress on several fronts

I'm not surprised that USA Today seems to be leading the pack in curbing its use of anonymous sources (see this earlier post of mine for a discussion of the history of the anonymous source). After all, its founder, Allen H. Neuharth, was the guy who called the anonymous source "evil." USA Today has even created a new position, that of standards editor, for the sole purpose of tracking the use of anonymous sources in the paper, and has reduced the practice by 75% in the year since they tightened their rules.

Even Newsweek is starting to reign in its out-of-control use of the anonymous source--at least a tad.

And then there's this revelation. If it's true (large "if"), then what a coincidence of timing! The greatest anonymous source of them all--the source of the anonymous source, you might say--Deep Throat, now coming forward with this:

Felt was initially adamant about remaining silent on the subject, thinking disclosures about his past somehow dishonorable. "I don't think (being Deep Throat) was anything to be proud of," Felt indicated to his son, Mark Jr., at one point, according to the article. "You (should) not leak information to anyone."

Could it be that someone's been reading neo-neocon :-)?


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