HuffPo ‘Kills’ 76,000 People: Headline Inflates Benefit Death Figures by 1900%

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Britain’s left wing media got really excited about how many people died after being taken off welfare benefits by Britain’s Department of Work and Pensions (because the department is run by a Conservative Party MP).

Despite the massive news about the immigration figures to the United Kingdom today, the Guardian chose to splash the story across its homepage, declaring, “Thousands have died after being found fit for work, DWP figures show”. The tone is almost gleeful.

But the Huffington Post went a bit further, effectively killing off 76,000 imaginary people in order to use the headline, “More Than 80,000 Died Within Six Weeks Of Being Deemed ‘Fit For Work’, Reveal Government”.

The number was actually closer to 4000.

The author, Owen Bennett, who is by and large a decent journalist, indicated on his Twitter account that it was an innocent mistake.

But I can’t help but feel that maybe, just maybe, some on the left so badly wanted that number of people to have died, just to stick it to the Tory government.

The story was corrected and changed, without a correction at the bottom of the article.

But it still exists elsewhere online:

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And people are still tweeting the link:

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And it pops up on news aggregators: 

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And on Facebook pages with over 20,000 followers: 

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Provoking responses on Facebook such as:

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Owen explained: 

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The HuffPo article has been shared on Facebook over 6,000 times at the time of writing.

Perhaps it would be an idea for the article to carry a disclaimer?