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Bug #40132 open:responded to

The Future is Now

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This bug appeared in a news report published by New York Times on Sep 9, 2015 by Associated Press. View the original news report.
Bug Type:  Faulty Statistics or Math

A wire story, (Plans for Tokyo Olympics Marred by Stadium Mess, Logo Fuss*) published on September 9, 2015, comparing preparations for the 1964 and 2020 Tokyo Olympics states: "Today, 56 years on, Japan's image is on the line" but it has only been 51 years since 1964. Unless the future is now.


JT Cassidy has contacted New York Times and received the following response.

I received an email reply from an, or maybe the, Assistant to the Senior Editor for Standards saying, "New York Times staff members do not write, edit or review A.P. headlines or copy — Reuters and A.P. articles hosted on our website are placed there via an automated service...," which sounds very  futuristic to me. He assured me that he would pass the buck, i.e. my email, to the A.P. and if they determined that there was an error, the NYT would "be informed over the wires," which doesn't sound very futuristic at all. 

Bug History

Sep 12, 2015 9:35 pm Open JT Cassidy
Sep 12, 2015 9:36 pm Open: Under Discussion JT Cassidy
Sep 13, 2015 8:51 pm Open: Responded To JT Cassidy

Discussion Leave a comment


*This is the url for the article mentioned above: http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2015/09/09/world/asia/ap-as-japan-olympic-upsets.html?_r=0

Sep 12, 2015 9:36 pm

This AP story is everywhere and every news organization tells it exactly the same except for at least two that I know of. A reader left a comment about it on the Japan Times news site and the paper soon cut the word "today" from the line but no matter how you slice it, that still seems wrong (and I hate to see sentences beginning with numerals). I used the error report function on the Canadian CTV news site to bring it to that news site's attention and everything went like clockwork. CTV took the bold move of altering the passage so it now reads: "Ultimately, it all went more or less like clockwork. Today, 51 years on, Japan's image is on the line." That seems about right.

Sep 14, 2015 3:16 am