Truth in Reporting

The editor and staff of the Skidmore Standard in 1901 kept up with issues at other papers in the area and took notice of the following in their July 27, 1900 edition:

Two Ways of Telling a Story

The Fairfax Forum office was recently burglarized and this is the way the editor writes up the incident:

“Thieves broke into our sanctum the other day, blew open the big office safe and rifled it.  In their eagerness to escape, however, they overlooked a package containing $5,000 in greenbacks, also a bundle of United States bonds amounting to several thousand dollars.  There’s nothing like keeping up appearances.”

But the real facts in the case are contained in the following item which was found elsewhere in the same issue:

“Some miscreant broke through a rear window in the Forum office Sunday evening, stole a few postage stamps and committed other depredations of a minor nature.  We are kicking because they used an old dirty ink knife to pry open some desk drawers when they could just as well have taken our scissors or screw driver.  The work was done by an idiot – no sane person would expect to get financial reward by breaking into a printing office.”

Any news report that uses the word “miscreant” gets extra points in our book.

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