While we were all waiting for the news on RGIII yesterday, a TV station from Richmond appeared to get the first scoop. Here's a screen shot:
"BREAKING: Sources close to the Redskins camps say Robert Griffin III has torn his ACL and PCL, and will not be able to play for a minimum of 14-18 months. Stay with 8News for updates."
This sent twitter abuzz, especially with the scoop that no one else had at the time. But within an hour, the breaking news was off the website and the story was back to the AP original text. I left a comment on the story asking what happened (since they didn't retract the story either, just deleted it). Within a couple hours they had not replied to my question, but over 100 users on the site had "upvoted" my comment, i.e. all asking the same thing. That's a lot given the long form needed to register to comment or upvote.
This morning I went back to the site to see if they had responded yet. They did not- but they did delete my comment and the 100 upvotes.
This is the worst way to run social media. If you are going to allow comments and for people to upvote the comments, you can't delete the #1 comment because you don't like it. We get it- you guys are embarrassed that you failed in such a major an epic way. So retract your story, apologize and move on. Instead WRIC has decided to just try and cover up what they did and delete comments about it.
Unfortunately guys, the "Benjamin" you thought you could delete has a well read blog in your state that has very good SEO. I wanted to put this up so even more people would see what you did than your original story. Nice job trying to cover things up, and good luck with your reputation after this bad reporting and even worse cover up.
UPDATE: They have now shut down comments on that one story. Time to contact the FCC?