Hot Best Seller

The Gray Lady Winked: How the New York Times's Misreporting, Distortions and Fabrications Radically Alter History

Availability: Ready to download

Think a newspaper can’t be responsible for mass murder? Think again. As flagship of the American news media, the New York Times is the world’s most powerful news outlet. With thousands of reporters covering events from all corners of the globe, the Times has the power to influence wars, foment revolution, shape economies and change the very nature of our culture. It doesn’t Think a newspaper can’t be responsible for mass murder? Think again. As flagship of the American news media, the New York Times is the world’s most powerful news outlet. With thousands of reporters covering events from all corners of the globe, the Times has the power to influence wars, foment revolution, shape economies and change the very nature of our culture. It doesn’t just cover the news: it creates it. But the institution that is the New York Times is showing cracks. No longer the fact-stringing paper of record once known as the Gray Lady, the Times has become a political lightning rod that divides more often than it unites. It is frequently beset by scandal and has even emerged as a symbol of the political, cultural and social ills plaguing our society. The Gray Lady Winked pulls back the curtain on this illustrious institution to reveal a quintessentially human organization where ideology, ego, power and politics compete with the more humble need to present the facts. In its 10 gripping chapters, The Gray Lady Winked offers readers an eye-opening, often shocking, look at the New York Times’s greatest journalistic failures, so devastating they changed the course of history. These are the stories that mattered most, including the Times’s disastrous coverage of the: Second World War – Holocaust – Rise of the Soviet Union – Cuban Revolution – Vietnam War – Second Palestinian Intifada – Atomic Bombing of Japan – Iraq War – Founding of America The result is an essential look at the tangled relationship between media, power and politics in a post-truth world told with novelistic flair to reveal a uniquely powerful institution’s tortured relationship with the truth. Most importantly of all, The Gray Lady Winked presents a cautionary tale that shows what happens when the guardians of the truth abandon that sacred value in favor of self-interest and ideology—and what this means for our future as much as for our past.


Compare

Think a newspaper can’t be responsible for mass murder? Think again. As flagship of the American news media, the New York Times is the world’s most powerful news outlet. With thousands of reporters covering events from all corners of the globe, the Times has the power to influence wars, foment revolution, shape economies and change the very nature of our culture. It doesn’t Think a newspaper can’t be responsible for mass murder? Think again. As flagship of the American news media, the New York Times is the world’s most powerful news outlet. With thousands of reporters covering events from all corners of the globe, the Times has the power to influence wars, foment revolution, shape economies and change the very nature of our culture. It doesn’t just cover the news: it creates it. But the institution that is the New York Times is showing cracks. No longer the fact-stringing paper of record once known as the Gray Lady, the Times has become a political lightning rod that divides more often than it unites. It is frequently beset by scandal and has even emerged as a symbol of the political, cultural and social ills plaguing our society. The Gray Lady Winked pulls back the curtain on this illustrious institution to reveal a quintessentially human organization where ideology, ego, power and politics compete with the more humble need to present the facts. In its 10 gripping chapters, The Gray Lady Winked offers readers an eye-opening, often shocking, look at the New York Times’s greatest journalistic failures, so devastating they changed the course of history. These are the stories that mattered most, including the Times’s disastrous coverage of the: Second World War – Holocaust – Rise of the Soviet Union – Cuban Revolution – Vietnam War – Second Palestinian Intifada – Atomic Bombing of Japan – Iraq War – Founding of America The result is an essential look at the tangled relationship between media, power and politics in a post-truth world told with novelistic flair to reveal a uniquely powerful institution’s tortured relationship with the truth. Most importantly of all, The Gray Lady Winked presents a cautionary tale that shows what happens when the guardians of the truth abandon that sacred value in favor of self-interest and ideology—and what this means for our future as much as for our past.

30 review for The Gray Lady Winked: How the New York Times's Misreporting, Distortions and Fabrications Radically Alter History

  1. 5 out of 5

    Becca Tullman

    For the vast majority of the book I thought it was poorly written and horribly edited. I also thought it was repetitive. I counted 4 times the story of Al-Dura was told. Every time the author referred back to that story, he told us again a synopsis of it, as if we hadn't just read it in the last chapter, and the one before that too! However, I thought that issues he was exposing and the misreporting and the coverups and the outright lies were important. Throughout most of the book I planned to g For the vast majority of the book I thought it was poorly written and horribly edited. I also thought it was repetitive. I counted 4 times the story of Al-Dura was told. Every time the author referred back to that story, he told us again a synopsis of it, as if we hadn't just read it in the last chapter, and the one before that too! However, I thought that issues he was exposing and the misreporting and the coverups and the outright lies were important. Throughout most of the book I planned to give it about a 3 stars, for important information but crummy writing, poor editing, and repetitiveness. Then I started to realize that he was engaging in some of the practices he was calling out. Stating his opinions as though they were fact, not telling us where he sourced some of the info, etc. And Then. In the penultimate chapter, under the pretense of telling us why the 1619 Project represented more of the same from the NYT, he spends a chapter telling us his opinion on why critical theory in general and critical race theory specifically are wrong and dangerous. I disagree with most of his reasoning, but he has a right to his opnions. My problem is, I wasn't sold a book about this white male's opnion about how history is not actually told through the lens of other white males in a way that helps keep them in power. I was sold a book about the issues with NYT reporting. I think in the end I'm still glad I read it, because I'd like to explore more about the alleged abuses at the NYT, (especially now that this author has so clearly shown his lack of objectivity, although I know that the Al-Dura story and how the NYT reported it and then failed to adequately correct it is at least factual) and also explore whether this happens at other major newspapers that I tend to trust. It was also a good reminder that whether malicious or negligent or just accidental, humans and therefore nespapers, will screw up. We need to look at multiple sources for big important news.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Brent R. Grover

    Good book with lots of editing errors Shocking expose of the evil nature of the owners of the New York Times but repetitive and poorly edited. Worthwhile reading.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Simon Eskildsen

    Imagine reading NYTimes's coverage of past historical events and discovering to your dismay how strange and straight-up misleading the reporting was at the time. Then digging further and uncovering perverse incentives for authors and cover-ups. That's what this book is. Although it's difficult to determine whether the author worked backward from "NYTimes is an extremely biased for-profit family business" or forward from "I wonder what the coverage was for historical events." I choose to read it a Imagine reading NYTimes's coverage of past historical events and discovering to your dismay how strange and straight-up misleading the reporting was at the time. Then digging further and uncovering perverse incentives for authors and cover-ups. That's what this book is. Although it's difficult to determine whether the author worked backward from "NYTimes is an extremely biased for-profit family business" or forward from "I wonder what the coverage was for historical events." I choose to read it as the latter, but I sense that Rindsberg took the former approach. Either way, you will probably unsubscribe from NYT after reading this book for the former reason. Presumably, other newspapers aren't much better, as their incentive structure isn't fundamentally different, perhaps except National Media (which the US doesn't have). That way of reading it alone is illuminating. As the saying goes, today's newspapers are tomorrow's birdcage liners. News expires rapidly, and historically even the largest media companies have gotten the narrative hopelessly wrong. NYT's coverage of Nazi Germany in the 1930s was covered by a pro-nazi journalist. So pro-nazi in fact that he was often quoted on Nazi broadcasts, and when all other journalists were put in jail when the war started, he was left alone "because of his proved friendliness to Germany." In fact, because New York Times is owned by a Jewish family, NYT didn't cover anti-semitism. They didn't want to be labeled as a Jewish newspaper and appear biased. During the war, Holocaust-related stories were only on the front-page 6 times. I can't help but wonder if we'll look at the Uyghur genocide similarly. This is the starkest example, but each chapter tells another story: Covering up the Ukrainian famine, long-term effects of nuclear weapons through radioactive poisoning, and so much more. Overall, it's not exactly a page-turner, but the first-hand narrative of the incentives and biases of for-profit media corporations (beyond the cheap clickbait arguments) will stay with me.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Tom Stamper

    Ashley Rindsberg is saying that the New York Times was not only wrong about reporting on the big stories of the last 100 years, but they were often intentionally wrong in order to serve other purposes. I have been reading about Walter Durranty lying about Stalin for years. But it wasn’t until now that I learned the Times provided cover for Hitler by downplaying his anti-Semitism through the 1930s while ignoring the death camps. And this was all while William Shirer was telling the world the enti Ashley Rindsberg is saying that the New York Times was not only wrong about reporting on the big stories of the last 100 years, but they were often intentionally wrong in order to serve other purposes. I have been reading about Walter Durranty lying about Stalin for years. But it wasn’t until now that I learned the Times provided cover for Hitler by downplaying his anti-Semitism through the 1930s while ignoring the death camps. And this was all while William Shirer was telling the world the entire truth on CBS radio from Vienna. Rindsberg’s theory about Hitler and Germany is that Sulzberger family was uncomfortable with being perceived as Jewish and therefore kept Jewish news out of the paper. There does seem to be another unifying theory that is maybe not entirely explored in the book. The New York Times wants the legitimacy that access provides even if that access requires not telling the actual story. They wholesale invented the entire Fidel Castro rebellion in Cuba and in that case swayed opinion toward him as a result. After reading this book, I don’t think I can trust any reporting coming out of China. But then again, how much can I trust any reporting coming out Washington DC for that matter? These Times feel strange not because they are different times, but because we now know better how the system actually operates and it's not like they tell you in school.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Adam

    Poorly written, woefully researched and under sourced, extraordinarily repetitive and internally inconsistent. The core idea has some merit, we should not rely on any one source, however trusted, but always check reporting, sourcing, and seek multiple sources. Unfortunately that message is lost in all the completely ridiculous over the top claims, statements, and hypocrisy. This is basically a long angry blog Article masquerading as a work of historical scholarship. I’m not at all shocked he coul Poorly written, woefully researched and under sourced, extraordinarily repetitive and internally inconsistent. The core idea has some merit, we should not rely on any one source, however trusted, but always check reporting, sourcing, and seek multiple sources. Unfortunately that message is lost in all the completely ridiculous over the top claims, statements, and hypocrisy. This is basically a long angry blog Article masquerading as a work of historical scholarship. I’m not at all shocked he couldn’t get it published and I don’t believe that had anything to do with the NYT’s power. No reputable house would publish this mess. Ultimately, his message, no one should trust any institution, however lauded, blindly, is too damaged by his own poor scholarship and clearly biased opinions presented as fact. Too bad, could have been an interesting examination if he’d followed any of the scholarship/journalist rules he excoriates the Times for messing up.

  6. 5 out of 5

    R Mitch

    A Must Read Regardless of one's race, sex, political beliefs or other differences, this book will be an illuminating discovery of a news organization which has mislead the world with falsehoods, half-truths and lies of omision for decades. The reader can look at historical events of the last 120 years and see how the New York Times mislead their readers on the start of World War II, Israeli - Palestine relations, Vietnam, the Gulf War's weapons of mass destruction and much more. Do you want to kn A Must Read Regardless of one's race, sex, political beliefs or other differences, this book will be an illuminating discovery of a news organization which has mislead the world with falsehoods, half-truths and lies of omision for decades. The reader can look at historical events of the last 120 years and see how the New York Times mislead their readers on the start of World War II, Israeli - Palestine relations, Vietnam, the Gulf War's weapons of mass destruction and much more. Do you want to know who the puppet masters are that have been deceiving you and manipulating your thoughts and beliefs, read this book. It is not politicians. The only question not answered is why.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Del Jones

    A book that could only be published Indie I’m a retired reporter who has lived through an unbelievable amount of journalistic fabrication. I was at USA Today when Jack Kelley invented stories out of whole cloth, just as Jayson Blair did at the NYT. I wrote an historical novel where the protagonist is a fictional lying inventor of the news named Jayson Kelley. Things have moved beyond fabrication to cancellation and I hope other novelists are willing to take that on. Hopefully, the NYT and other g A book that could only be published Indie I’m a retired reporter who has lived through an unbelievable amount of journalistic fabrication. I was at USA Today when Jack Kelley invented stories out of whole cloth, just as Jayson Blair did at the NYT. I wrote an historical novel where the protagonist is a fictional lying inventor of the news named Jayson Kelley. Things have moved beyond fabrication to cancellation and I hope other novelists are willing to take that on. Hopefully, the NYT and other great publications will pull their heads out before it’s too late. This terrific book implies that’s not likely. — Del Leonard Jones.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Hardik Vijayvargiya

    There's no surprise in the fact that The New York Times is engaging in malicious journalism, especially when you see it's reporting related to Asia and specifically India. This book just gives you more ammunition and historical context to not get swayed by such journalism. There's no surprise in the fact that The New York Times is engaging in malicious journalism, especially when you see it's reporting related to Asia and specifically India. This book just gives you more ammunition and historical context to not get swayed by such journalism.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jay Mehta

    MUST-READ - This book basically confirms, and provides more supporting evidence for, what rational people have been witnessing about the New York Times, especially in the last couple of years. Being from a country that has been misreported with military precision in NYT, the book revealed that we are not alone and it is not a recent phenomenon. Ashley also highlighted how Pulitzer prizes became a tool to vindicate reporters from any accountability on fake news or propaganda. And NYT never bother MUST-READ - This book basically confirms, and provides more supporting evidence for, what rational people have been witnessing about the New York Times, especially in the last couple of years. Being from a country that has been misreported with military precision in NYT, the book revealed that we are not alone and it is not a recent phenomenon. Ashley also highlighted how Pulitzer prizes became a tool to vindicate reporters from any accountability on fake news or propaganda. And NYT never bothered to take any responsibility for peddling false narratives. It was almost frustrating (on NYT) reading through this book. And I am sure NYT is not alone. Such books need to be written for other news media outlets as well.

  10. 5 out of 5

    stephanie zaro

    A must read for both liberals and conservatives An eye opening and sometimes shocking callousness of one of the world's most prominent newspapers one can only hope this book will lead to changes in the journalistic field A must read for both liberals and conservatives An eye opening and sometimes shocking callousness of one of the world's most prominent newspapers one can only hope this book will lead to changes in the journalistic field

  11. 5 out of 5

    Oren Mizrahi

    tl;dr: wildly one-sided, repetitive, mix of fact and opinion, covers some stories i knew and lots that i didn’t in rindsberg i have finally found someone who hates the nytimes more than i do. he writes 10 chapters, each covering a single scandal, or a series of scandals, where the nytimes betrayed its covenant as an objective source of the news. the first few are more clear (a writer spreading nazi propaganda, a writer hired by the soviet union to spread propaganda, a writer hanging out with cast tl;dr: wildly one-sided, repetitive, mix of fact and opinion, covers some stories i knew and lots that i didn’t in rindsberg i have finally found someone who hates the nytimes more than i do. he writes 10 chapters, each covering a single scandal, or a series of scandals, where the nytimes betrayed its covenant as an objective source of the news. the first few are more clear (a writer spreading nazi propaganda, a writer hired by the soviet union to spread propaganda, a writer hanging out with castro, etc.) the latter are better examples of decisions the newspaper took that the author, or some, disagree(d) with. the first few chapters are incredibly valuable. i didn’t know many of the stories, but they appear to be well-publicized. the research, to my knowledge, is not new, but rindsberg does a good job compiling the story. one of the difficulties is in pinning down how much the paper knew at different levels. he uses intuition and guesswork to imply blame at every level he possibly can, but he comes short of making false accusations. it’s clear he wants to, and this comes across. the later chapters seem like criticisms of the paper’s editorial decisions, like to run years of stories undermining the war in iraq, and to promote critical race theory. some of it is editorial criticism, like that the times is using half-baked sources often on important stories. the general theme is that the times is trigger happy with stories that further its writers’ and publishers’ world view (stories about israeli brutality that were complete fiction, murders committed by us troops back from iraq, etc.). this is a big problem, but rindsberg doesn’t do the hard work of backing this theory with more concrete evidence (like data about them firing editors, and pushing to go to press with stories very quickly). instead, he writes colorfully and lets his passions drive the story. the writing is disorganized, haphazard, and repetitive. the book was quick to get through, but could easily have been a long form piece. rindsberg should have stripped down the bullshit and either published it as an article or built on it with more concrete evidence. the book covers almost 100 years of history - surely there are more than 10 big scandals. someone more forgiving of the times might come away with the argument that no organization is infallible, every paper has fake stories or unethical reporters, and these mistakes are only magnified by the prominence of the times.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Liedzeit Liedzeit

    My whole (adult) life I have believed in the New York Times. When I stayed in New York many years ago for a couple of months I read it every day. But even before I thought it was the best paper in the World. Whenever there was a problem, so I have learned watching old movies, you could always go to the Times. I have a subscription and I still read the paper regularly. A while ago I unfortunately was forced to admit that maybe the paper was not perfect after all. When all major papers reprinted th My whole (adult) life I have believed in the New York Times. When I stayed in New York many years ago for a couple of months I read it every day. But even before I thought it was the best paper in the World. Whenever there was a problem, so I have learned watching old movies, you could always go to the Times. I have a subscription and I still read the paper regularly. A while ago I unfortunately was forced to admit that maybe the paper was not perfect after all. When all major papers reprinted the Muhammad caricatures out of solidarity the Times did not so. When a teacher was beheaded by an extremist in open daylight in France the way the Times reported the incident was bizarre. But reading this book is yet another story. I was not prepared to learn that not only had the Times some dark spots it basically is directly responsible for everything bad in the world. (I am exaggerating slightly.) I always wondered why Nazi Germany propaganda bothered to put the blame for the war on Poland. It seemed absurd. Apparently the NYT fell for it. The slaughtering of millions of Jews never made it to the front page. The fact that Jews were the main victims was something the Times thought wise to ignore. The killing of millions of Ukrainians by Stalin (through starvation) was also not reported. And the journalist who received a Pulitzer prize for his work later admitted that he knew about the killings. Fidel Castro was created by the Times (and the man came to NY to thank them personally). The Vietnam war would have ended in 1971 if not for the New York Times. - This is obviously exaggerated again, but reading Rindsberg gives me the impression. And finally with the 1619 project they try nothing less than creating a new history of The United States (not just rewriting). This is an ongoing process and maybe the most disturbing. Eminent historians have protested about factual errors and it seems the NYT more or less ignores criticism. Racism, they say, is part of the DNA of the country. I believe that they have the best of intentions, but this is a really bad metaphor. Some of the claims are obviously untrue (as far as I can see) like saying that everyone white benefitted from slavery. I really did not like reading this book (it is also not very well written) but I think it is very important. [There is no index in this book. This fact alone costs one star.]

  13. 4 out of 5

    Drtaxsacto

    What would you think of a newspaper whose reporters a) Ignored a famine in the Ukraine caused by Stalin(Walter Durante) which killed an estimated 4 million people and then when this perfidy was pointed out refused to return a Pulitzer he received for his coverage; b) ignored the plight of the Jews in Germany leading up to WWII(Guido Enderis) and when American journalists were detained by the Nazi regime he was pampered, c) ignored the brutality of Castro on multiple occasions (Herbert Matthews); What would you think of a newspaper whose reporters a) Ignored a famine in the Ukraine caused by Stalin(Walter Durante) which killed an estimated 4 million people and then when this perfidy was pointed out refused to return a Pulitzer he received for his coverage; b) ignored the plight of the Jews in Germany leading up to WWII(Guido Enderis) and when American journalists were detained by the Nazi regime he was pampered, c) ignored the brutality of Castro on multiple occasions (Herbert Matthews); d) Allowed one of their reporters to be simultaneously being employed by the military (William Lawrence) and ignored the toxic effects of radiation ; e) created a false story and then perpetuated it about the sources of the second intifada (Debra Sontag); f) hired and maintained a reporter who engaged in egregious misrepresentations of several major news stories including the DC sniper until it could not longer be tolerated (Jason Blair); g) did a series of stories about post war traumas for returning vets from Afghanistan and Iraq which had little or no basis in fact and ignored major reports coming to a different impression; h) created a false narrative called the 1619 project which claimed to be transparent but is in fact a biased treatment of US history with an ideological purpose? You might have guessed who that paper is (here is a Microsoft News Service listing of their 10 biggest whoppers - https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/... ). This book should be an eye opener about the veracity of the Gray Lady and the family that has controlled "all the news that fits (our ideological view of the word) we print". This is a detailed summary of many of those failings. It is worth the read.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan

    Worse editing than a college journalism class essay. This book could be 150 pages easily and deliver all the major beats/points. Lessons: Get your news from multiple sources, don’t trust everything you read and be concerned if there is only one media/news outlet that gives you your information. Organizations that don’t hold their staff accountable to their values spend much more on covering up mistakes than they do on the mistakes themselves. Also don’t read this book, read something else.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Mike Seaworth

    Writing is repetitive and badly needs editing. The author's accusations about bias/misinformation are provided with little to no historical context. The author does not provide the backup necessary to prove his opposing viewpoints, thus not holding himself to the same standards that he claims the NYT violates. This may be the worst book I've ever read. Writing is repetitive and badly needs editing. The author's accusations about bias/misinformation are provided with little to no historical context. The author does not provide the backup necessary to prove his opposing viewpoints, thus not holding himself to the same standards that he claims the NYT violates. This may be the worst book I've ever read.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    Poorly edited, repetitive, and later chapters seem based more on the author's opinion than verified by facts. I do understand the New York Times is fallible but I do not feel the author proved his title hypothesis of "radically alter(ing) history." Poorly edited, repetitive, and later chapters seem based more on the author's opinion than verified by facts. I do understand the New York Times is fallible but I do not feel the author proved his title hypothesis of "radically alter(ing) history."

  17. 4 out of 5

    Eric

    These stories: "Second World War – Holocaust – Rise of the Soviet Union – Cuban Revolution – Vietnam War – Second Palestinian Intifada – Atomic Bombing of Japan – Iraq War – Founding of America" all exhibited just how wrong "the Gray Lady" can be in her reporting of "all the news that's fit to print." Rindsberg has, indeed, pulled back the curtain and shown us some of the truly muddled (and worse) reporting that has been a relatively regular feature of what many would like to believe is a venerab These stories: "Second World War – Holocaust – Rise of the Soviet Union – Cuban Revolution – Vietnam War – Second Palestinian Intifada – Atomic Bombing of Japan – Iraq War – Founding of America" all exhibited just how wrong "the Gray Lady" can be in her reporting of "all the news that's fit to print." Rindsberg has, indeed, pulled back the curtain and shown us some of the truly muddled (and worse) reporting that has been a relatively regular feature of what many would like to believe is a venerable news institution. One could try to make the case that the NYT is a big organization and any such entity will at times be bound to get a few things wrong. I can no longer accept this argument as some of these stories went on for long periods of time and corrections have been exceedingly hard to drag out of the organization or are still denied as problematic. Reader (of the NYT) beware.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Nancy Mills

    This will destroy any remnants of faith you may have had in the press. 5 stars for importance, 3 stars for editing and organization. You won't find this one on the New York Times bestseller list! It's a whistleblower account of blatant bias (inexcusable in any newspaper, let alone America's supposed "flagship newspaper") and worse, deliberate deception passed off as truth by respected reporters who should know better. The negligence of the organization's management in printing this stuff likely c This will destroy any remnants of faith you may have had in the press. 5 stars for importance, 3 stars for editing and organization. You won't find this one on the New York Times bestseller list! It's a whistleblower account of blatant bias (inexcusable in any newspaper, let alone America's supposed "flagship newspaper") and worse, deliberate deception passed off as truth by respected reporters who should know better. The negligence of the organization's management in printing this stuff likely cost millions of lives, including Jews in World War II and American troops and Vietnamese and Iraqi civilians in those respective wars. The NYT also supported Castro to the detriment of Cubans' freedom. And we thought fake news was a new thing.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Meghan

    Important book. Long overdue. The idea that certain powerful institutions like The NY Times should not get a pass in terms of scrutiny re their core competence and function in society is so important. The NYT has too long been an unquestioned truth teller so many look up to at the pulpit each day each week. As consumers, we should wonder what journalistic shortcuts or errors have influenced our understanding of the world and also we should understand what (if anything) systems are in place to en Important book. Long overdue. The idea that certain powerful institutions like The NY Times should not get a pass in terms of scrutiny re their core competence and function in society is so important. The NYT has too long been an unquestioned truth teller so many look up to at the pulpit each day each week. As consumers, we should wonder what journalistic shortcuts or errors have influenced our understanding of the world and also we should understand what (if anything) systems are in place to ensure corrections occur when needed. The examples of journalistic issues - ranging from unintentional benign errors that result in huge consequences and uglier, lazy or fraudulent reporting given in this book are well-documented and recounted. All examples have had clear implications in global dynamics and public opinion - now that we can look backwards and see how history has played out. I seriously think these examples are just the tip of the iceberg. As a reader I don’t care about misspellings or grammatical corrections - I care about the rigor in fact finding and truth telling. This book has increased my mistrust in the paper even though I am a liberal New Yorker. Some conclusions made re the implications of errors are softly tossed out as obvious and not as well justified / documented as each initial example of misreporting. Some of the jumps may not be as obvious or clearly meaningful to the reader as to the author. While it doesn’t take away from the primary point and purpose of the book, it makes me realize that the author’s own biases and personal interests are not really woven in the writing beyond the introductory forward explaining the book out his career at risk due to the industry power the NYTimes holds. I want to know why the author focuses on this one paper. Why he personally picked each example (when I’m sure there were many to choose from) and whether any of the original players from any of the examples incidents had any comment re his scrutiny. What do any of these people say about their past decisions now? Especially those who no longer work at the paper or in the industry. What does their hindsight 20-20 sound like now? I’d love to see a follow up with these additional layers to further understanding on this important topic.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Bonny Wright

    Never believe the New York Times. Well documented, original sources, devastating evidence of the complicity of the Times with the worst atrocities of the 20th century. And still lying today.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ronald J.

    Social media doesn't have a monopoly on fake news. It began much earlier, and Ashley Rindsberg tells the story like no one else has by focusing on The New York Times (NYT) reporting and various major events throughout history. He’s a young philosophy graduate, and he wrote this book not to oppose the NYT but to unearth the truth. The book had to be independently published since publishers were afraid of offending the paper. Journalism, as they say, is the first draft of history, so naturally mis Social media doesn't have a monopoly on fake news. It began much earlier, and Ashley Rindsberg tells the story like no one else has by focusing on The New York Times (NYT) reporting and various major events throughout history. He’s a young philosophy graduate, and he wrote this book not to oppose the NYT but to unearth the truth. The book had to be independently published since publishers were afraid of offending the paper. Journalism, as they say, is the first draft of history, so naturally mistakes will be made. But this book documents so many errors and outright lies it makes you wonder what has happened to journalism. The chapters are a historical tour of the NYT reporting from Hitler’s Germany and the Holocaust; Stalin’s Soviet Union and its famines; Fidel Castro’s Cuba (it’s said the NYT got him his job due to its misleading reporting regarding his “revolution”); The Vietnam War; The Bombing of Japan; The Middle East; all the way to the 1619 Project. There’s a lot here, some of which is infuriating, especially when Rindsberg compares the NYT reporting with other journalist’s reporting from the same location. It’s fair and balanced look at the facts, and although I’m sure some devoted readers of the NYT will not agree with everything, I believe the weight of the evidence is compelling. If you’re interested in journalism, and history, you’ll enjoy this read, even if you don’t agree with everything in it. Rindsberg might not have uncovered the whole truth, but this book moves us closer to it.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Carlos

    I used to think The New York Times was good, and only recently started to fabricate stories and push a narrative instead of facts and truth, but turns out I was wrong. The New York Times has been an enemy of the people (and a friend of the NY elites) for decades, and even being awarded worthless Pulitzer prizes for it. This book gives many examples of the atrocious reporting of the Times, showing both individual journalists malpractice, as well as broader editorial problems. Some parts of the book I used to think The New York Times was good, and only recently started to fabricate stories and push a narrative instead of facts and truth, but turns out I was wrong. The New York Times has been an enemy of the people (and a friend of the NY elites) for decades, and even being awarded worthless Pulitzer prizes for it. This book gives many examples of the atrocious reporting of the Times, showing both individual journalists malpractice, as well as broader editorial problems. Some parts of the book are not well written. It starts well, but some sections are in need of a good editor. It's worth the effort to get past that, though, as the truth this book highlights is needed in this age when people love to have their ears tickled with the soft symphony of whatever they want to hear, even if it's blatant lies passing as truth.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Donna

    This book concentrated on but few of the "errors" of the NYT. He is far more forgiving than I am. I see it as deliberate, manipulative, propaganda withmalicious intent. The few instances the author cites are illustrative of the contempt for truth the owners of the NYT have. But they are far from the whole story. I would recommend it only for those still under the mistaken notion that the major media has any shred of integrity remaining. This book concentrated on but few of the "errors" of the NYT. He is far more forgiving than I am. I see it as deliberate, manipulative, propaganda withmalicious intent. The few instances the author cites are illustrative of the contempt for truth the owners of the NYT have. But they are far from the whole story. I would recommend it only for those still under the mistaken notion that the major media has any shred of integrity remaining.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Paul

    Haven't finished this yet. There's some kind of agenda going on in this book, and I haven't read enough to determine what it is. I suspect it comes from a very conservative viewpoint, but I don't know yet. I'd like to see how this author feels about feminism and patriarchy, but I don't think I'll find that in this book. Haven't finished this yet. There's some kind of agenda going on in this book, and I haven't read enough to determine what it is. I suspect it comes from a very conservative viewpoint, but I don't know yet. I'd like to see how this author feels about feminism and patriarchy, but I don't think I'll find that in this book.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth Traver

    Absolutely terrible. I can’t think of a more awful book that I have read in my entire life. Poorly researched, highly subjective, poorly edited, riddled with conspiracy. At least if you’re going to be a conspiracy theorist make it entertaining and interesting, this is just garbage, and a perfect example of the dumbing down of society.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Donna Hoover

    It seems the New York Times neglected to review this book. And...the flagship New York library doesn't have it on the shelf. Hmmm... It seems the New York Times neglected to review this book. And...the flagship New York library doesn't have it on the shelf. Hmmm...

  27. 5 out of 5

    Joseph M

    Eye opening book about the failures of the NYT. I must read for anyone paying for a subscription.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Bharath Prabhu

    I have always held the view that an editorial centre is necessary to deal with natural human biases and tendencies of on-the-field reporters. With news agencies increasingly either left or right leaning, barring the exceptional few, the thought of a strong editorial core ensuring a centrist approach to reporting seemed like a perfectly reasonable approach with little to no flaws. But Ashley has done a wonderful job to expose the many instances that a news organization's reporting is only as good I have always held the view that an editorial centre is necessary to deal with natural human biases and tendencies of on-the-field reporters. With news agencies increasingly either left or right leaning, barring the exceptional few, the thought of a strong editorial core ensuring a centrist approach to reporting seemed like a perfectly reasonable approach with little to no flaws. But Ashley has done a wonderful job to expose the many instances that a news organization's reporting is only as good as the editors and people they employ and often times overlooking that process and employees of news agencies favoring sensationalism, anecdotal stories and frankly laziness can lead to disastrous consequences. What now for the future of news and facts in general? How will technology, social media and various other platforms shape the way society writ large receives the word of the day? Given all humans are susceptible to error (selfishness, fame etc.) this seems like an impossible undertaking. This book has actually pushed me to consider the technology oriented view of reporting and news as a far more viable and future-oriented alternative. Imagine a world where each quantifiable fact is objectively validated through a decentralized anonymous platform like a blockchain. Every single block could have facts of the world's history validated by members of society who would be participants of that blockchain ecosystem. Reporters would be in charge of unearthing these facts for validation and eventually all of the content you see on print media or otherwise would be editorials or opinion pieces built off of this fully trustworthy repository of quantifiable facts. It is a scary yet exciting hypothesis. Looking forward to observing the how the world evolves its narrative.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Matt Berkowitz

    This is a narrative-driven, non-quantitative analysis of some of the most egregious journalistic blunders by the New York Times in the past century. Rinsberg devotes chapters to: Guido Enderis’ naïve, incredulous and/or perhaps intentionally deceptive positive framing of the Nazi regime, specifically as related to the 1936 Summer Olympic Games in Berlin (which excluded Jews); Walter Duranty’s denial of the famine going on under Stalinist Soviet Union; Herbert Matthews’ absurd claims about Fidel This is a narrative-driven, non-quantitative analysis of some of the most egregious journalistic blunders by the New York Times in the past century. Rinsberg devotes chapters to: Guido Enderis’ naïve, incredulous and/or perhaps intentionally deceptive positive framing of the Nazi regime, specifically as related to the 1936 Summer Olympic Games in Berlin (which excluded Jews); Walter Duranty’s denial of the famine going on under Stalinist Soviet Union; Herbert Matthews’ absurd claims about Fidel Castro being a pro-democratic, anti-communist leader; and, a more recent example, the pseudo-historical 1619 Project by Nikole Hannah-Jones, a historically revisionist account of the USA’s origins that overemphasizes slavery and anti-black racism as a central, if not defining, feature. What the reader cannot tell from the book is whether the Times is any worse, on average, than other publications who reported on such events—though sometimes Rinsberg does demonstrate that other reporters *did* report on these specific events more accurately. As a statistician, I wanted a more quantitative analysis that could more rigorously answer the question of how the Times compares to other publications, how often the Times churned out fake news (to use a popular contemporary term) that fell victim to foreign propaganda, and how—according to the book’s title—this misreporting alters history, something the book doesn’t clearly elucidate. All in all, it's a well-researched book, but I was left a bit disappointed by it’s purely narrative-driven approach.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Aayushmaan Jain

    Eye opening. 4/5. I understand now why some people remain so sceptical of "leftist" institutions, but not to the extent where I would consider becoming an anti-vaxxer. -1⭐ because a lot of the author's conclusions seem interpretive, so though his criticisms may be sound, I fear they could be incomplete. I am not sure if I can blindly trust his conclusions since I do not possess the necessary context to evaluate them. But irrespective, I think the author does a stellar job at highlighting how NYT f Eye opening. 4/5. I understand now why some people remain so sceptical of "leftist" institutions, but not to the extent where I would consider becoming an anti-vaxxer. -1⭐ because a lot of the author's conclusions seem interpretive, so though his criticisms may be sound, I fear they could be incomplete. I am not sure if I can blindly trust his conclusions since I do not possess the necessary context to evaluate them. But irrespective, I think the author does a stellar job at highlighting how NYT fell short of publishing the "truth" at various critical junctures in history - Nazi Germany, World Wars including the atomic bombings, US wars, etc - things you would except one of the most prestigious newspapers to get right, even if eventually. I also specially enjoyed the last chapter which wove events from 2020 (the Black Lives Matter protests) into this narrative and this is my first time reading a book that discusses events as recent. The author offers some interesting takes and I look forward to discussing them with other people.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...