In another blow to the readers and remaining journalists of the nation’s oldest continuously published newspaper, the Hartford Courant may be tapping into Journatic — a faux news gathering operation that relies on the outsourcing of local news coverage involving low-wage news writers half way round the world.
According to Free Press and the Free Press Action Fund, the Chicago Tribune, the Courant’s parent company that is still in Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, was forced to drop Journatic services last week over fake bylines and plagiarism contained in coverage in the Trib’s stories in the Chicago area.
Journatic, however, may still be part of the news columns in the Courant.
Free Press supporters in Connecticut received the following e-mail appeal below that calls out the media company for using the low-wage and ethically challenged Journatic in Connecticut:
Is there any job that can’t be outsourced?
Millions of American workers have lost their jobs as employers have moved operations overseas. It’s true for manufacturing, data processing and customer service.
Since the story broke, Journatic’s credibility has rapidly unraveled. We’ve learned that Journatic-produced stories with fake bylines have appeared in several papers. More than 350 articles with fake bylines ran in the Houston Chroniclealone. And over the weekend, the Chicago Tribune indefinitely suspended its use of Journatic after it uncovered instances of plagiarism.
Sign our letter so that media executives across the country know that you can’t fake local news. With your help we can return local reporters to local beats.
More information at www.freepress.net