UPDATE (at bottom of post): Letter writer to Romenesko accuses Jarvis and Arrington of falsely accusing Damin Darlin (author of the NYT article that started this kerfuffle) of attacking bloggers.
Nothing like a battle between mainstream media and bloggers over journalism ethics to add some juicy drama to the weekend. Here’s the quick and dirty:
The New York Times runs a story taking tech bloggers (including TechCrunch) to task for running stories without verification.
TechCrunch’s Michael Arrington fires back, accusing the Times of having already made up its mind about what kind of story it was going to run before it interviewed him.
And Jeff Jarvis weighs in, declaring that “process journalism” — reporting what is known or believed to be true as it is learned — is replacing the myth of perfection, wherein reporters get the story verified beyond any doubt before packaging and presenting it to readers.
Ah, but there’s the rub: What is the potential harm in reporting what falls into a category that’s perhaps a notch or two below what is “believed to be true”? Arrington makes the argument that TechCrunch’s post on rumors of Apple being in talks to acquire Twitter was based on a previously reliable source. Furthermore, he argues, the very act of reporting a rumor is a way of verifying by beating the bushes, so to speak: