Friday, September 04, 2009

Lost in Translation

Or something. Anyway, it happened again: if it's on the Internet, it must be true! Foreign newspapers once again believed an Onion story. From Wired UK:
Yesterday's edition of The New Nation, a Bangladeshi newspaper, included an article credited to the "Onion News Network, Lebanon, Ohio" with the startling headline: Conspiracy Theorist Convinces Armstrong Moon Landing Was Faked. What followed was a faithful reproduction of an Onion story from August 31:

Apollo 11 mission commander and famed astronaut Neil Armstrong shocked reporters at a press conference Monday, announcing he had been convinced that his historic first step on the moon was part of an elaborate hoax orchestrated by the United States government.

According to Armstrong, he was forced to reconsider every single detail of the monumental journey after watching a few persuasive YouTube videos, and reading several blog posts on conspiracy theorist Ralph Coleman's website,

Another paper, Daily Manab Zamin, also ran the story, translated into Bengali. Both have now acknowledged that they reprinted the story without checking it, and have apologised to their readers.

"We thought it was true so we printed it without checking," the New Nation's associate editor told the AFP, which doesn't inspire too much confidence.
That's still not as good as several years ago when Beijing's largest newspaper reprinted an Onion story about Congress threatening to move out of Washington unless the city builds a new, modern Capitol building.

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