The New York Times likes to pride itself–often sanctimoniously–on being the paper of record. But the publication noted in October that Manti Te’o’s girlfriend, who was revealed on Wednesday to have never have even existed, was a “Stanford alumnus.” Lennay Kekua, Te’o’s “girlfriend,” obviously never attended Stanford.
In a story, on October 13, about Notre Dame’s 20-13 victory over Stanford at South Bend, The New York Times wrote:
This has been a trying season for Te’o, whose grandmother and girlfriend died within hours of each other last month. His girlfriend, who lost a long fight with leukemia, was a Stanford alumnus.
To be fair, every other outlet–without fact-checking–repeated the original narrative set forth in a story in the South Bend Tribune in which Manti Te’o’s father described the times Te’o allegedly “met” his girlfriend at Stanford and Hawaii. But very few of these publications hold themselves up to be the arbiters of what is and is not good “journalism” in the way the Times does.