Misquoted in DNA’s story on Professional Bloggers

On Sunday, DNA ran a story about professional bloggers. I recognized Gautam Ghosh in there and oh, what’s this – I found my own name there too! What on earth am I doing in a story about earning money from blogging? Nothing I’ve seen in the past four years leads me to believe that I can get paid to write about my personal life, the city and general ramblings on relationships. But ah, wait, that’s not what I’m supposed to be doing. According to DNA,

Idea Smith (as known in her blog), who refused to disclose her name, always loved Bollywood movies. But things changed when she got married. Her husband refused to watch a movie without reading a review, and much to her chagrin, she realised that almost all reviews gave away the plot. Soon enough she started maintaining a blog, wherein she reviewed movies. She had hit the jackpot. As word spread, her blog started getting many visitors, and she decided to go commercial. Now, the blog called withoutgivingthemovieaway.com, gets around 1,500 visitors a day and makes her richer by at least 15,000 a month. “I have grander visions”, says she, as she now blogs on relationships and the like in another blog. “I think such a blog is extremely viable for the market.”

Sure, I love Bollywood but I don’t remember writing a Hindi movie review in ages. What’s more….I’m married? Err, not. I am flattered to be mistaken for her but I’m not Meetu of WOGMA. I can only feel glad that Meetu and I know each other and were able to sort it out with each other offline.

I’m thinking of some journalists who have turned up their noses at my kind of writing (blogging!) because “It’s not based on hard facts.” Really, now?

I must point out that a number of my good friends are journalists and may I add – good journalists. Indeed my first interaction with DNA was a good one since Mahafreed who interviewed me obviously took the time to look up my blog and reference the story I mentioned and even quoted directly from it.

I’m really disappointed this time, and what’s more, wary. There’s just no excuse for running a story on a national daily (or anywhere in the media) that is wholly and utterly unresearched and tacks the wrong person’s name to the wrong quote. Meetu and I both left comments on the online version of the story yesterday morning. Those comments have not yet shown up. Anybody have any ideas on what to do? Or do we just assume that the print media is not accountable to us for hard facts?

21 thoughts on “Misquoted in DNA’s story on Professional Bloggers

  1. You can’t do much if the paper decides not to publish your comments because it shows them up for shoddy reporting. You can, however, make sure that at least your readers point it out to them as well, and hope that sheer volumes will make them print (or upload) the correction.

    Sumants last blog post..On The Dark Knight

  2. Being misquoted is prolly worse than not being quoted at all. But then it was pretty sick of them to not approve your comments and act as If nothing happened….

    Guess they’re ignorant of the power of social media!

  3. Cant you mail the editor? not that it matters once you and Meetu sort it out..

    but they need to be told they’re doing a crappy job.. and whoever wrote the story should be pulled up.

  4. @ Sumant: Yup, I was indeed hoping for that.

    @ Neha, manuscrypts: 👿

    @ maxdavinci: Not all journalists are like that. By yes, I’m appalled that this one is.

    @ Amrutha: Yes, I saw that. The comments are still missing though.

    @ Amey: Whew! I never left!

    @ Which Main? What Cross?: Gaaaaaah. And you tell me that right after I come out with my identity (see next post)!!!

    @ Kalyan: I don’t think so. This journalist spoke to me as well and I clearly told him that I was not a ‘professional blogger’. He messed up our names. And no wedding anniversaries for the unmarried!!!

    @ the mad momma: I think it still matters. They can’t be allowed to get away with a mistake like this and stay so complacent (which is what the journalist sounds like).

  5. I was quite shocked when you called and told me about this the other day. I was hoping DNA would do the decent thing and at least print an apology –

    but apparently they decided to take the chickens way out –
    (01) They deleted both yours & Meetu’s comments
    (02) They just edited the story online.

    Online version now
    ➡ “Another popular blogger who writes for withoutgivingthemovieaway.com always loved Bollywood movies. But things changed when she got married”

    Melodys last blog post..Meet the Hypocrite, Non Patriotic Me.

  6. *** Posted this on Meetu’s blog too ***

    One thing I did not understand, they are saying that this Jim Karter guy earned 70K USD last month.. but where is the proof? He had same kind of thing in Mumbai Blogcamp too but I don’s see any reason to believe without the proof.

    And when it comes to newspapers, they should have the proof in their hand which says that the information they have received is correct.

    I would simple call this as careless journalism.


  7. @ Melody, Kalyan, Ms Taggart: Bleh, some people, I tell ya…

    @ Deep Ganatra: For someone who mixes up names in an article for a national daily and shows no remorse…..does the concept of ‘facts’ even exist?

  8. @IdeaSmith – haha you are right.. I had faced similar kind of issue with TOI guys (their Mulund – Thane edition) – she copied the stuff from my blog and posted as if I had given her any interview..

  9. @ Deep: I’ve been hearing some horror stories of this nature from other people as well.

    @ Arcopol: May I say what a pleasure it was to meet you? A few of my good friends are journalists and I was quite appalled when this happened. Thanks however to these aforementioned people, my faith in your profession is retained. What’s more, I really appreciate your listening to what I had to say at your blogcamp talk and even more – coming back to reference this incident. It’s really good journalism to check on your data.

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