Well you knew this was coming after the LA Times got scooped in their own backyard—An article went up yesterday on their website wondering, "How would we have reacted if TMZ had been wrong about Michael Jackson's death?"
The Times Alexandra Le Tellier ponders the burning questions:
Can you imagine if TMZ's story spread on Twitter before Jackson's family even learned of his death? And who was TMZ's source anyway? The site's managing editor, Harvey Levin, said he and his staff made hundreds of calls, but he didn't divulge whom they spoke to, which makes one question whether they confirmed the news with a reliable, accountable source — as is required by the Los Angeles Times — or if they spoke to someone who was violating patient confidentiality.
This is really funny, of course, because TMZ didn't get it wrong. They got it right, long before anyone else did, and for that they should be credited with breaking a major story.
But you know who did get it wrong, what with their "reliable, accountable" sources and all? The LA Times! Long after TMZ had reported Jackson's death, the Times was still reporting that Jackson was in "a coma," wrong reporting that trickled down to CNN, which was still sticking with the coma story sourced by the LA Times long after people across the nation were already in the streets talking about the death of Michael Jackson.
There are times when you just have to admit defeat and move on to fight the next battle. This was one of those times. Sadly, nobody bothered to tell the LA Times.
How Would We Have Reacted If TMZ Had Been Wrong About Michael Jackson's Death? [LA Times]