As Twitchy reported in November, CNN’s Sara Sidner ran a story erroneously implying that a 4-year old Palestinian boy named Mohammed Sadallah had been killed by an Israeli air strike.
Sadallah’s death was likely the result of a misfired Hamas rocket, not an Israeli bomb.
Sidner mentioned her erroneous story yesterday after she was asked about a similar story about a 11-month-old Palestinian baby (the child of a BBC reporter) who was killed by a Hamas rocket. That baby, like Sadallah, was wrongly portrayed as the victim of an Israeli bomb.
CNN did update Sidner’s video in November, noting that Israel denied killing the Palestinian boy. We have been unable to locate a correction or retraction, however.
An update is progress, but Sidner’s entire report was based on a unsubstantiated premise. The right thing to do is run a formal retraction and remove the video from CNN’s web site.
The video is still posted (available here).
The media watchdog site MediaBugs recommends that corrections should be explicit and transparent:
When a news organization decides a correction is called for, the correction should be made as soon as possible. On the Web, the change needs to be made transparently. Any correction of substance should be mentioned in a note that appears at the top (best) or bottom of the article.
We have asked Sidner to point us to CNN’s correction if in fact one exists.
If we hear back, we will update this post.