This is a very unusual story, one of the biggest journalistic "oops" I've seen in a long time: Today Ira Glass and his "This American Life" radio program retracted a major story that was critical of Apple Inc. and its supplier Foxconn International. The story, "Mr. Daisey and the Apple Factory," Jan. 6, tells the story of Mike Daisey, a self-described "worshipper in the cult of Mac" who was disillusioned by the company's outsourcing practices. (I mentioned the report several times recently, including a column, "Apple gets caught outsourcing ethics," and a blog post, "Apple and Foxconn see the light.") In his retraction, Glass wrote: "We've learned that Mike Daisey's story about Apple in China - which we broadcast in January - contained significant fabrications. We're retracting the story because we can't vouch for its truth." Read the retraction for the full story -- the program discovered problems with the report when another journalist contacted the translator who worked with Daisey. According to the retraction, the Apple story was the single most popular podcast in "This American Life's" history, with 888,000 downloads and 206,000 streams to date. "This American Life" will cover more on the retraction tonight. David Folkenflick from NPR, via Twitter, has this response from Daisey: This American Life is a "journalistic enterprise, & as such it operates under a different set of rules and expectations. But this is my only regret."
'This American Life' retracts story critical of Apple and Foxconn
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